Who’s Your #2?
Every great business has a great #1 AND a #2.
What does that mean? You need a great leader/marketer/visionary. And you also need someone who can get things done for you based on that vision.
Here’s a few great 1-2 combinations…
Apple: Steve Jobs and Paul Wozniak
Microsoft: Bill Gates and Paul Allen
Google: Larry Page and Sergey Brin
Ben & Jerry’s: Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield
Led Zeppelin: Robert Plant and Jimmy Page
San Francisco 49’ers: Joe Montana and Jerry Rice
Musical Scores: Rodgers and Hammerstein
Movie Critics: Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert
Aren’t Partnership’s Doomed to Failure?
Now with small businesses a standard rule is don’t do partnerships. They have a very high failure rate. But that is typically because there is often unequal commitment to the goal, or the methods, or both want to lead and it is tough to have a two headed leadership model. Basically people get confused over who to follow.
But if you have one who is a visionary, and another who is great at executing that vision, you have a recipe for success.
I spent most of my business life as that #2 person.
For over 25 years I’ve worked with many great small business entrepreneurs.
They had tremendous passion. They had a vision for where they’d like to take their business. They could sell that vision. Their energy and enthusiasm was contagious.
And that was where their strengths were most beneficial.
Sometimes You Need Help
Their strength wasn’t in translating the vision into implementation. It wasn’t in creating the necessary infrastructure to support the vision. It wasn’t in hiring the right people, getting them trained and up to speed quickly, and dealing with the endless challenges that people bring to a perfectly good business idea.
So that was where I would come in. I would help them convert their vision into reality.
Full Contact Collaboration
We would strategize together. We’d discuss options and impacts.
I’d challenge their ideas…but never their leadership.
They could be passionate. And I could too.
Nothing topic was off limits. But we never attacked the person. That was the only way to ensure the collaboration would be a success in the end.
And as long as you both know and are committed to your respective roles, you can achieve great things.
Greatness is Waiting…Will You Accept the Call?
The good news about all this is if you’re a business owner. If you’re the #1 type. And you can get past your insecurities. And be willing to hire or promote or reassign the appropriate team member to support your vision, you can achieve so much more that you ever would have without that person.
And what if you’re not there yet? What if you aren’t quite that emotionally secure yet?
Outsourcing…the Entry Level #2
Well start with outsourcing. Outsource those areas that are not critical for you to perform but will free up your day to do more of where your strengths lie.
By doing this it is almost like having a silent #2 doing your bookkeeping, or running personal errands, or running your lead generation campaigns.
You’ll find that you achieve so much more. And your vision for your business will be achieved at a much faster pace.
Enjoy your #2…and enjoy Freedom!