Work Your List

Work Your List

In last week’s Great Idea, we talked about the importance of finding and developing right-hand men and women. Because when you fill and foster these key positions, you lessen dependence on yourself as CEO and you greatly grow the value of your company.

I asked you to take some time this past week to make a list of everything you do as CEO. And then I asked you to go back through your list and identify every task on it that someone else on your team now could do at least 80% as well as you.

How did that go? It can be an eye-opening exercise for those of us who have built our on companies from the ground up. We tend to think we’re indispensable and therefore we have to be involved in every decision. Making this list forces us to get over our own egos and accede that there are a great many things that others on our teams can effectively take the reins on.

This week look back over your list and make note of which members of your team have the potential to take over different responsibilities. These are the folks you want to foster.

You do this first by testing them. Give them a set task, with a set timeframe and a set goal, and see how they do. Talk to them about your vision for the company and their place in it; do they share it? If they clear these hurdles, delegate more responsibility to them. And if problems arise, resist the urge to jump in right away to fix them. Give your team members the time and space to succeed, or fail. In time you’ll figure out who can truly grow into the role of a right-hand man or woman, and who just isn’t cut out for it.

It’s one of the smartest things you’ll ever do for your business.


That book was Focus: The Future of Your Company Depends on It, and it was Clay’s nice way of telling me I had a lot to learn. And boy did I. I devoured the book, and then I met with Clay again. He became an endlessly generous mentor to me, teaching me and business owners all over the country about the principles of professional management through Aileron, the educational organization he founded to help entrepreneurs.

That’s why I’m so excited to announce that Clay and his son, Mike Mathile—an accomplished entrepreneur in his own right—will be joining me on stage at GROW! 2018 for a special keynote session. In a free-ranging conversation, I’ll talk to Clay and Mike about how you transition your company for success. These are two of the sharpest minds in business. Their insights have helped and inspired me enormously, and I know they’ll do the same for you.

Learn more about and register for GROW! 2018 here.

And then stay tuned for some more exciting news this week about what other surprises we have in store at GROW! 2018.

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