I wish I could give credit to the individual who created this image and wrote the copy below. Whoever you are, you have captured the crux of the problem with delivering the thing you do best- your expertise- to an organization or to a founder in need of what it is you do.
SCENARIO: You join a new team to assume responsibility for X.
Immediately, before you look much under the hood, you are immersed into becoming a part of their Entrepreneurs Operating System.
EOS®, the Entrepreneurial Operating System, is a complete set of simple concepts and practical tools that has helped thousands of entrepreneurs get what they want from their businesses. Implementing EOS will help you and your leadership team get better at three things:
Vision—getting everyone in your organization 100% on the same page with where you’re going, and how you plan to get there
Traction®—instilling focus, discipline, and accountability throughout the company so that everyone executes on that vision—every day
Healthy—helping your leaders become a more cohesive, functional, healthy leadership team
You fly through a day and a half of vision board building, as a newcomer, and are asked to commit to achieving a lot in the first 90 days. When you joined their team you were told their business was in great shape and just needed Y- your specialty to take off. So when asked what you can accomplish in 90 days- ‘your rock’ you say: ‘ it’s possible if things are in order to achieve Y-30% in the first 90 days’. Considering your new to the team AND solely based on what the founder assured you of was already in place, it seems plausible as a stretch goal- which is what you are asked to offer up.
And but of course, things are not what they seem. Y may be the goal but you quickly find out that have to retool the Y engine first to get it to run before we can get back to executing on Y. Not a major rebuild but definitely a deaccelerating-in-the-weeds-time-suck before you can get back to building momentum.
But you can’t tell them instantly it’s broke. You need to build more trust. And worse, through EOS, you are now responsible for the problems that you were told did not exist when you came on board. So you work harder to build trust with the team. You start trying to show them, not tell them what really is under the hood so they will engage with you and rethink their own next steps.
And then they tell you they don’t have time to do your job and why can’t you just do it? In the end, they don’t want to learn anything from you about the process they need to go through to fix it- not only are they holding you responsible, their actions and thinking is rendering you ineffective because in a small business no one succeeds alone. It takes everyone to solve big problems by working together.
Except, in this scenario, building more trust won’t help you or them win. While your founder says they have only some knowledge in your field, and you have more than 30 years working in your area of expertise across sectors, you quickly realize your founder is a ‘ I know it all’, even when they don’t kind-of-team-captain. And if they are not demeaning you because of their own fears and insecurities, they are testing you to see if they think you qualify for the seat –instead of working with you to solve the problems at hand. And when you do find them engaged, they can only focus on what they feel like doing, not recognizing at all what needs to be done and learned to move on. Especially if it means a change to their plans.
This, my friends, is the risk you take building trust first. That in the end, it won’t matter because they won’t listen to you anyway. And you never can even reach the first win to show them how much you can help.
There is no other way to make changes and help others with your expertise if you don’t work for them, and with them, until they trust you enough to implement what you know needs to be done. It is always a win when you can recognize where credit is due, and respect it and listen to it. This is the first step. If it never comes, once some trust has been built, then maybe its time to quit.
To your highest purpose and best self.
To learn more about me go to Sana Sells, iaeou.me, Crowdfund Capital Advisors, LisaCanning.com, Lisa’s Clarinet Shop, or Royal Musical Instruments. You can also find me on Linkedin.
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