Saturday, January 12, 2008

Oprah has one - Business advisor that is.

Oprah has one. The President has several. Bill Gates has some. Almost every successful CEO or top executive has a business advisor, if not more than one.

Why do they do that? Call them advisors, coaches, or consultants; they serve the same purpose - making the executive more successful and more fulfilled with what they are doing.

When do you know you should have a business advisor?

1 ) You know where you want to be and want someone who has been there to show you the way.
You have developed a vision for the company. Now how do you make it a reality? Why learn the hard way and stumble into problems when you have no need to do this. You wouldn’t start out on a trip without a map of how to get where you are going. It is the same for business.

2 ) You have no one to bounce off ideas and confirm sound thinking.
There is always a risk that the pressures of the day have caused you to miss something important in a decision. You need an unbiased sounding board. At the executive level, you can’t really let down your guard and talk to your boss or the Board. They expect that you will have all the answers and they will have the questions. You can’t talk to your subordinates. They also expect that you have the well thought out plan and are just looking to you for direction. Same for your colleagues. You can’t talk to your spouse because they are clearly not unbiased and don’t understand the full ramifications. So to whom can you turn?

3 ) You feel you have to do it all yourself.
“It is lonely at the top.” is a truism. However, with a little help you can learn how to get even better results and be able to spend more time on what else really matters in your life. Advisors know how to put in place the strategies, plans, processes, teams and resources. You are an expert in your business and they are experts in their field as well.

4 ) You have that nagging feeling you should do something about your business but are too busy working IN your business to work ON your business.
There never seems to be any time to sit down and think about the future or even what could make a significant difference in what you are doing today. The issues of the day and your people are more than enough for most days. It is difficult to get things under control and your efforts focused.

5 ) You are working ridiculously long hours.
You are continually fire fighting in your business, endlessly trying to solve mundane problems and not spending your time on the thinking and high leverage opportunities. Delegation is challenging. Your team may or may not be good but they demand major portions of your time and if they are not completely aligned to your plans, they demand even more. The business advisor can bring focus to you as well as accountability to keep you on track.

6 ) You feel that with all the effort and worry you are still not getting the results you want or need.
Overheads are relentless. Competitive pressures intensify. Customers are fickle. Your market position is eroding. Technological advances cut into your advantages. There are organizational pressures. It never ends. Get unstuck. Sometime you need a catalyst to ignite the process and jump start the business renewal. The possibilities for business success are great.

There are multiple studies by top research firms concluding that failing to get help is one of the top reasons that business and executives fail. CEO’s are in place for a shorter and shorter time as are all other C level executives. Every day counts.

“In order to be a good coach you must first have played the game”
Vince Lombardi

So what are you going to do?

Let me know if I can help. Fortune 500, top 25, experience for medium and small companies.

John Maver
Maver Management Group
(925) 648-7561
Maver Management

View John Maver's profile on LinkedIn

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