VC | Creative Artist.
All right, let's talk about business execution and particularly why good business and great business execution matters. Getting right to it, those who execute efficiently and in a timely fashion and professionally stand head and shoulders above those who flounder and bobble and aren't on their game and lose focus and don't get things done.
Think about it. You're an investor. You're going to put money into a company. Do you want to put money into a company with a group of people who cannot execute or who can execute? Do you want to be a part of a team of people who are getting things done and making headway in achievements or just not and just crumbling in the organization and the journey of their own lives? Both of these things and types of people are present in our world often and really probably all the time. For our part, we have the ability to filter between one or the other, and determine which group presents to us in a way like they're on their ball, and which group presents to us in a way that they don't know what they're doing?
I get it, there's stuff going on in all of our worlds right, and when we undertake the journey of building a business, that stuff either swallows us or we manage it so that we can also build a business and prosper.
My business philosophy, and I believe startups in particular, offer a channel and a conduit for us for growth; for reaching the next level and the new level in our lives financially and creatively, professionally, and socially, among others. They are a vehicle to do amazing things, with huge and lasting potential and massive possible impacts to our world and in our world in a good way that helps many, many people.
BUT, we can't do these things if we can't even get out of our own way.
We can't. If we are overwhelmed by the fact that we have one business task to do for ourselves in a certain day and we can't allocate appropriate time for oursevles to do that outside of the hours that we need to be focusing on doing business, then how do we expect to break through on any kind of level business-wise? We're just drowning in your own lives, let alone being clear and focused on what we need to do to move a business forward, which is a whole nother entity, right? We need to move ourselves forward, we need to move our business forward. Those things need to happen hand in hand, but if we can't manage our lives, how can we manage a business?
Both of these come hand in hand in that we need to do both. We need to manage both. I suggest to you here our lives are a function of our design. We are not victims to it as I've said many times before and with and for that consideration, we need to organize and rearrange and realign our world and our lives so that we can take on these opportunities and these challenges and these scenarios to build into our world, both to our benefit and the benefit of other people as well.
So, execution is like the cornerstone that differentiates a little microgarage startup that nobody cares about or believes in from a world class company like Disney, right? How does a guy like Walt Disney start a company and it grows into what it becomes today? That's a vision, that's a path, and then that's execution along that path, right? It doesn't mean it's always purely simple and easy along the way, BUT execution isn't just about how we get things done, it's about THAT we get things done. There are people that just don't get things done, right? If we want to be a successful entrepreneur and a successful CEO and President of a company and we want to go out and do great things, we have to get things done and we have to get things done pretty much no matter kind of personal drama stands in our way.
When I travel on business or when I'm involved in something, I make sure I clear everything I can out of the way. There may be personal or life issues that need to be addressed and I do everything I possibly can to get them properly organized and managed so I can focus. And then I am fully and completely present and on the business task until it is achieved and completed.
For example, there are business trips I have left on and said to those around me and on my team, "Look, I'm leaving, my bag's packed, and I'm going to go deal with this issue and I am not coming back until it's resolved." Now, I digress that that has sometimes had me on the road at times for months on end, doing the work to make sure that gets done because if it doesn't get done, then everything falls apart or everything could fall apart at minimum, and that would be a mess and good for no one.
That's the first challenge of executing, is figuring out what all the little hoops are, lining them up, and then knocking them down. That's the work. Execution is everything, if we want to be at the big dance and play in the big game and we want to make amazing things happen. It doesn't mean we have to be stressed. It doesn't mean we have to force things. It doesn't mean we have to exhaust ourselves, but what it does mean is that we want to and need to and should build a reputation for ourselves in business to be someone who executes in the business that we do.
If I handed you a task today and said this is what I need done and I need this done today, (in which I wouldn't do if it seemed unreasonable to accomplish), but you come back at the end of the day and you're crying and in you're in tears and you said, "I just couldn't do it...(whiiiining sound)..I don't know ... Like, you know, there was a bus and I missed the bus and then like the coffee shop, you know, they just ... They're really rude and like ..."
Okay, all of this is just drama. If you just had a really tough day, I get it, but the point I'm saying is, at the end of the day, we all go through these things. ALL OF US. We all experience certain layers of challenges throughout our day, yet some people succeed and prosper despite them, so, the real question is, when those challenges emerge, how do we respond to them? Do we react to them.. Do we let them zap our energy or we let them get to us and throw us off on our mission and our path and our purpose and our work, or do we smoothly move through them like a knife cutting through butter? I suggest here the more we master our ability to do this latter, the better we become at executing because we stay focused eyes on the prize. None of the distractions really matter, that's all drama and noise.. that is us, resisting ourselves, to grow into who we are meant to become.
So that's a big, big focus and that's why I wanted to just talk about this today, it's about executing like a professional that builds confidence, that builds trust, that builds credibility, and then attracts people to want to do business with us.
So, let's talk about some ways that we can get better at executing:
We don't leave tasks open-ended. If we tell someone I'm gonna do this, then we go and do it. If we are running a company and we have investors to answer to and we are doing something, we go do it. Because if we don't, then we;re building ourselves a reputation of someone who says they're gonna do things and never gets them done, and which of those two do you think builds confidence, attracts more capital, attracts more support and partners and opportunity for yourself? It's pretty obvious.
Caveat to this - Yes, sometimes things take longer, then but challenge here is follow through.. If it takes a week or takes and month++, the question is, do we get it done, or don't we? We want to be the types of people who make things happen and get them done.
Another way to be better at executing is to have patience. Have patience for the people we're working with. Have patience for the people who need to contribute their part to the grand formula of whatever it is we're trying to get done. And have patience in the process of it occurring.
That said, also, have clarity, right? So in clarity, make sure people are actually doing what they're doing. Make sure our team is communicating and on point and playing together. So important. So, so important because if they're not and they're saying, "Yeah, I'm on it. Yeah, I'm on it," and we go, "Okay great. Well I'm just super patient and no problem and like everything's cool," but they're not doing any of the work and we're pretty ... 90%, 100% clear of that, well then what's going on, right? So we need to actually be able to filter that. It's appropriate to ask questions and it's appropriate to expect and to see progress along that path and for that progress to be communicated is a function of a team that is collectively working on a mission that everyone is aligned on together, on the whole.
So have patience but then also seek clarity. Executing with with clarity of purpose.. which also requires great communication, right?
Communicate with our team. Great execution is staying in a rhythm with our action and our activity. ie. "Hey, these are the 10 steps. You're Step One, you're Step Two, you're Step Three, you're Step Four. Boom, Step One's done. Step Two, you're up." We quarterback these things with communication. So important to execution is being a quarterback to see these things through. Because otherwise it can be like herding cats and everybody runs in different directions and doesn't achieve anything and they all run into little challenges throughout their day and maybe those challenges derail them, but who's getting these people back on track? Who's keeping them confident and in line to get things accomplished? That's our work as a President, as a CEO, as a successful entrepreneur is keeping people in their zone. Not holding people in their zone, but encouraging them into their zone and supporting them into their zone, where they're vibrating productively and confidently to execute as opposed to as, we joke, "crying in their cereal" and not getting anything accomplished. That's our role as leaders to operate on this level.
Another way to execute and be very good at executing is knowing where we want to go. So start at the end point and work backwards. Where are we going with this task that we're looking to accomplish and achieve? What is it for? Why does it matter? Connecting ourselves to our purpose in your task and recognize how that fits in to the whole picture of what we're doing and operating in, and that importance and that significance will keep us on track and keep us aligned with the reason and the reasons that we are embarking on this task in the first place.
We need to be able to run and manage our lives, no matter whatever the circumstances are that are our present world, it is our world to design and that is our world to run and we are in control of the choices we make as a function of our world. So what are we doing to get this done? We need to do whatever it takes. If we need to travel to the other side of the country, do it, right? If we need to be in front of that person in the room in that meeting to close the piece of business, do it. Get business done. Execute like a boss, like a champion. Stay in it until it crosses the finish line. Every single item. Do whatever it takes. Now we gotta go and run across town. Do it. Now we gotta go back across town again. Do it. Now we've got to get up early tomorrow because this needs to be done. Do it.
Why are we doing these things is a deeper holistic question to ask ourselves; ie. why we're executing on the items that we're executing on and the deeper intention that is in alignment with our path and purpose, of course it can bring us more energy and make things clearer to make these moves, but ultimately, regardless of the reasons, we are the responsible ones. We as presidents and CEOs and directors and entrepreneurs, we are the ones saying we are here and we are going to do it and then it is up to us to go and do that thing and that's it. So it's a chain of events to get to an outcome most likely and getting there is directly a function of our drive and consistency and commitment to achieving that end, to achieving that goal, and that's so, so important. So, whatever it takes.. We get it done.
Now of course I say that within reason. I don't mean go rob a bank. I don't mean hurt somebody. I mean do what it takes in business. Do what it takes professionally, right? As an ethical businessperson to be present; be where we need to be, sign the documents we need to sign, get the signatures we need signed to complete the negotiation, to address people's final concerns that may come up in late moments in discussions or negotiations or whatever. Do whatever it takes to get this over the line and then get it over the line and then even once we're done getting over the line, double check it again. Make sure it's accurate. High level, world class standards of executive management, business management, CEO, presidency, directorships, entrepreneurship, execution. First place, best in class. That's the level we roll around here. That's the way I roll. Those who know me know I do it. I get things done. I get things done like a pro, I get things done like a boss and I make cool things happen, but because I'm on my game as an individual, I manage my life and my business both. My life is in order and I manage my life elements. My business is in order, I manage my business elements and I'm on top of both and I manage the time I spend so that I can execute and I can flow and I create the things that I'm meant to create in my life. Otherwise, these things can consume and paralyze us and for my part I have no interest in them consuming me. I have gifts and I have missions in my world and I am bringing those to life and I am executing them like a champion. I invite you to do the same.
I hope this has provided some insight for you on the nature of executing and the importance of executing like a boss in our businesses. Like, comment, share if you're feeling this. Check what's on my other content. More to come no doubt because this is how we roll. I appreciate your interest and will chat with you some more soon.
VC | CREATIVE ARTIST
I have spent some 15 years building and financing startup companies, with a deep passion for positive social impacts and the creative arts. Now as I continue about my personal and professional journeys, I share everything I know and have learned with you here.