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Part 1 - Two Simple Facts

Being “boss” sure is tough. What really makes it tough is that being the ”boss” you have two facts that are working both “for you” and “against you” at the same time. Yet these two relatively simple facts are what being boss is all about. And how you decide to play one fact against the other will make ALL the difference in your successes.

As a boss, if you haven’t caught onto what these two facts are yet, you might be surprised to hear that you already know what they are. You “have to know” them to take on the role. Yet, when you hear them, there’s a high probability that nothing of significance will change for you or your operations.

You see, knowledge is very difficult for most people to apply and hence most people are left powerless to use knowledge to their advantage. They refuse to use it either by design or default. Hence, “knowing” makes no difference in most cases.

Now, I’m sure that you may take what I say and dub me as unnecessarily cocky in these statements. It might be because over time I’ve become certain of what I say and don’t even try any more to hold back sharing it. And to aggravate my attitude, experience and research back me up on this. Statistics show that 98% of the American population has heard what these two certain facts are and all involved have taken absolutely no action on their own behalf to use the information to make a significant difference for themselves and those they care for most.

And this is also backed up by the fact that most people will invest in assistance yet never take real advantage of it. Now, if you want a brutal reality check on this, ask yourself how many of those self-help books and tapes are collecting dust on your shelves less than 30% completed, much less read or listened to for a second or third time. What’s that? A huge number you say?!?

Well... ... you're not alone.

Yup, as boss, you certainly have a double-edged sword you’re welding. And it’s surprising that you have no anxiety at all that at any instance the very edge you use to get your cut of income can just as easily cut you out.

So let’s spill it out on the table for you to see it in all its splendor.

If you’re owner and operator of a business, there is no doubt in my mind that you’re the indisputable “Boss.” And with that understanding, I believe we both shall agree on two simple facts: 1) Within all legal, moral and governing constraints and regulations, “you're the one who makes up the rules of your business game”; and 2) When application is required for performance, follow thru and non follow thru, “you're the one who enforces the rules of that game.”

Them’s the facts. It’s really an elegant system at play and you’re the sole creator of it - making and enforcing the rules. And it’s a great game if you play it well and respect the two facts that bring you into bosshood. The payoffs sure can be immense on all fronts of your personal and professional life.

And there in lies the tricky trouble most bosses don’t get. As “the boss,” you’re supposed to practice what you preach and hold yourself accountable for the game at play, the very game you “made up.” This means you’re the “one” who is responsible for taking action to assure the game is being played out according to the rules you set up. Yet most often, this is not what normally occurs.

Usually, when upsets occur in the boss’s game and the boss is called to decide to support the original choice of being in business, things start getting very fuzzy. The boss may start making “choices” on the part of the boss’s personal circumstances rather then “decisions” on the part of the business and its plan. (Please see previous articles on “Choosing to Decide ...” for further clarification on this subject.)

And when those choices come into fruition, well... the likelihood is slim that the boss will enforce those stringent rules designed to move the business forward. You see, the boss can’t fire the person who didn't follow thru or make a supportive decision here because that person IS the boss.

So the “Boss” makes a unilateral choice to either suspend the rules or rewrite them. Hence the enforcement, either firing or other penalties that would normally occur, won’t happen. The boss gets a reprieve by rewriting the rules and an attitude of “the rules be damned” starts to prevail.

TRANSLATION: The original rules (called the business plan in some cases) go out the window. It’s quite a gnarly wicket we weave - I know this personally 'cause I’m a boss too!

Now let’s get back to the subtitle of this little blurb. Who’s boss when you run into situations that requires you to decide against accepting a) clients that don’t meet your customer profile; b) job orders for products and services beyond the scope of your business operations plan; c) interruptions and mis-directions from people non supportive of your business plan; and d) any or all matters that are not pertinent or supportive of your original intent?

The "business feud" survey says the correct response is “The boss is” and in your case, “You are!” And who’s the boss when you choose to accept any or all matters that are not supportive of your original intent as scoped out in your business plan? The survey still says “You are,” but you’re now taking direction from other influences that have their own agenda non supportive of your operations. Hence you might have the title but you’re definitely not leading. And if you’re not leading you’re being lead.

CAPITALIZING ON A THEME: Ask yourself with the utmost of honesty: How often have you been called to enforce the rules and you were in “one of those moods” where you merely rewrote the rules to fit the situation? How often has this come back and bit you, costing you additional time, money and stress? What chronic situations have you been experiencing that create a need to break the rules of your game? Do you truly have a system set up to hold you accountable enough to adhere to the rules because the cost of non performance is too high to bare? And the most important question to ask yourself is, “Who holds you, ‘the boss’, accountable?”

PREVIEW: My tale of woe :-P. I’ve a tough job, too. I’m often hired by the very bosses who don’t want to be held accountable for what they hired me to hold them accountable for - keeping them on track, focused and accountable. Let’s peek at what can be done to bring into play some checks and balances on the typical boss’s system to cause higher productivity - next week.

Have a BODACIOUS week!


Coach John S. Nagy is CEO and Lead Business Coach for Coaching for Success. Inc., a Business Coaching Service specifically designed for top level decision makers dedicated to peak performance in all facets of their activities. He's hired to focus them continuously in activities that bring higher returns on their resource use. His programs are for the seriously committed. This means having his clients work "ON" their businesses, not just "IN" it. He's a published author and a multi-degree professional with a nationwide client base. Coach Nagy can be reached through his E-mail address at his website at http://www.coach.net and by calling 813-949-0718.


Copyright © 1999 John S. Nagy

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