Flexibility Keeps You Going
I was recently talking to a fellow business owner who had gone through a bit of a struggle. His business is back on track, and we discussed this common occurrence shared by many entrepreneurs. When the success or failure is on your shoulders, it is a very difficult time when things go wrong.
As an employee, you can sit back and second guess the decisions your boss is making, and often feel a sense of superiority when you find you were right and their decisions were the incorrect ones. However, when it’s all in your control, making the “right” decision is often difficult.
What can go wrong?
Some of the most common things that can go wrong are:
- Sales drop or stagnate
- You are too busy with the day-to-day that you didn’t look beyond tomorrow
- Disgruntled employees
- Unexpected resignation from a key employee
- Supplier failure to deliver
- Drop in your customer service
- Negative shift in your own attitude
Many of these situations happen slowly, which prevents you from noticing until it’s too late. So, how to you keep going, and get back on track? Flexibility!
What I have learned from many business owners who experienced this is that they had to become more flexible – with their time, thoughts, and even policies. One shared that he was working so many hours that he didn’t come up for air. His blinders were on and he was way too focused on one issue, which led to problems in other areas. A business coach and mentor helped him open his eyes.
A few seasoned entrepreneurs admitted that they had the, “It’s always worked this way in the past,” and weren’t flexible enough to listen to new ideas. An adjustment with shipping schedules corrected a supplier problem. With this issue solved, employee morale improved since they weren’t dealing with unhappy customers.
Flexibility with policies, when within employment law, is often what employees are seeking. Being more flexible with vacation (allowing 1/2 days instead of insisting all vacation days be in full-day increment) was a huge morale booster for one entrepreneur.
When the world you built starts showing some cracks in the foundation, it possibly can be fixed very easily – by exercising some flexibility. Flexibility, when feasible, will often get you back on track where you can, once again, enjoy business ownership.