Dear Auntie B,
I constantly read about the necessity to work on the business – not in the business.
But what’s the right balance? I run a small business with 10 staff. I am very hands on, and no complaints so far, as we have been very successful.
While I do work on the business, my key staff complain on occasion that I am too hands on.
I do work very long hours, but I am in the fortunate position where I can do that.
I have been reading all these reports about the Prime Minister micro-managing. and I find myself thinking, what’s wrong with that?
Well, the problem with Kevin 24/7 is he is not just micro-managing. He is getting distracted by things he shouldn’t. There have been a number of stories in the media that indicate that Rudd has fallen into the trap of forgoing discipline to chase rabbits down holes.
One recent example? Apparently he recently cancelled meetings to spend hours looking up his quotes on computers in classrooms. The quotes were made during the election campaign and Rudd wanted to be able to respond to criticism. That’s fine. But what he is doing cancelling meetings to do the work of a press secretary?
That’s not micro-managing. Being distracted by unnecessary things is bad management. It is vitally important for an entrepreneur – or any leader – to concentrate on the details.
Setting vision, strategy and the big picture is hugely exciting. Looking closely at cost control, the way the business is structured so it runs economically, and performance outcomes are all equally as important. There is no point having a big vision of where the organisation is going if you don’t know whether the business is being run correctly day in, day out.
You say you are working on the vision and strategy and keeping your hands on the reins, so all power to you. In fact I’d be wary of the managers who complain about you micro-managing. They might just want you off their backs!
Your Aunty B