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Respect your investment

To be an entrepreneur means that you are willing to bet the ranch on your vision. You are betting on your abilities to create, lead and grow a viable business enterprise. It doesn’t matter if you started your company years ago or if you’re about the press the launch button - being an entrepreneur is most certainly a form of gambling. It doesn’t matter if your style is to play it safe and bet in measured doses or let it all ride on one big heart-thumping hand, you are responsible for your company’s success or failure.

In the coaching and consulting business, we work with all sorts of leaders. We work with wild cowboys who like to live on the edge and avoid any semblance of structure, discipline and accountability to the non-negotiable rules of business. These cowboys luck out for bit, but always seem to struggle over the long haul. At the other end of the spectrum, we work with highly structured, detail-oriented and disciplined leaders who often find their companies stifled by their inability to adapt to change and innovate. In the middle, we meet leaders who avoid responsibilities, procrastinate and get stuck in their own quagmire of compromise, resulting in contaminated cultures and one crisis after another.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • If your home, personal assets, personal guarantee, reputation and the trust of all who believe in you are on the line, what more does it take to get you to respect your investment?

  • What will it take for you as a leader to make the tough decisions when necessary and not avoid them until the business pain is excruciating?

  • What will it take to for you to do quarterly performance reviews quarterly, not once a year?

  • What will it take for you to invest quality time to engage with and lead your team, not hide in an office, get lost in new pet projects, or allow the work of the business to consume your time?

  • What will it take to get you to live your cash-flow plan and pay attention to your financial reports?

  • What will it take to get you to understand that “you” are not your company? You work for your company. You are part of the team you lead.

  • What will it take to get you to work on the important stuff, not just the busy work?

  • What will it take to get you to manage your time and productivity, just as you want others around you to do?

  • What will it take for you to adhere to the same rules, standards and systems that you expect others to?

  • What will it take for you to look in the mirror and take ownership of the challenges your business faces?

What will it take for you to respect the money and time you have invested in your business? It’s a choice that every entrepreneur makes every day. To respect is to honor. Sadly, I’ve seen too many entrepreneurs disrespect their companies and their role as its leader. They don’t pay attention. They actively and openly practice entitlement behavior. They allow their egos to get out of control. They gamble with their family’s security and the security of their employees and their families.

Yes, respecting your investment is a choice. Is it time for you to examine your choice and change?

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Please share your thoughts about today’s Monday Morning Wake-Up. Click here to comment.

Neil Ducoff, Strategies founder & CEO and author of No-Compromise Leadership

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