5 traits of business owners that can make it difficult for them to be good managers

5 traits of business owners that can make it difficult for them to be good managers

As the owner of a business you must have some entrepreneurial spirit. But as your business grows and you employ people to drive your business forward it is important to understand that some of the traits that helped you to drive your new business forward are not necessarily the traits that will help you manage the people that are going to help you take the business further.

Here are 5 traits that you will have had to get your business off the ground that may hold you back as you grow.

  • 1) Love of change and the new
  • Entrepreneurs are change makers. They are not satisfied with the status quo and can easily get bored if they feel they have created a new status quo. Most employees like the status quo. It gives them certainty and predictability. One of the biggest challenges for any business is the transition from a nimble, flexible and agile operation to one where there is a hierarchy with processes that have to be maintained. Processes are the mechanisms by which business becomes repeatable with consistency but they can drive the entrepreneur crazy. Understanding the difference between need for change and for consistency is a vital step in adopting the management style that is appropriate for the size of your business.

  • 2) Attitude towards failure
  • If you are going to set up a new business then you are going to make mistakes and some of the actions that you take will not work. The ability to learn from these mistakes and failures is critical to the future success of the business. In her book “Mindset” Carol Dweck talks about the Growth mindset and the Fixed mindset. The fixed mindset does not comprehend that learning can come from failure. To the fixed mindset a failure is complete and final. To someone with the growth mindset a failure is just an opportunity to learn. The manager mindset has to be one which sets up systems and processes that are reliable and do not fail which means the manager and the entrepreneur can be uneasy bedfellows in any business.

  • 3) Motivation and drive
  • Entrepreneurs/business owners have to be extremely self-motivated with immense drive and energy; when they employ managers for their business they are unlikely to find people with the same level of motivation. This can lead to frustration and feelings that the business sits squarely and solely on the shoulders of the entrepreneur. By pushing too hard the entrepreneur can actually end up creating an atmosphere that reduces motivation levels even further.

  • 4) Speed and impatience
  • Business owners like to get things done quickly. Time is undoubtedly money for a new business. Impatience with people who cannot work at the same speed and level of intensity as the owner will only cause people to become more uncertain about the choices and decisions that they need to make in their daily roles.

  • 5) Blind spots and single-minded thinking
  • To get a business off the ground and running takes single-mindedness. Appreciating that the people you hire are unlikely to share your single minded vision and that they have different priorities will save conflict and wasted energy in managing the conflicts that arise when people are working to different priorities and agendas.

    Understanding that these 5 traits can be detrimental to getting the results that you want, from the people you employ, does not mean that you accept performance below the levels that you and your business needs to survive and thrive. It means that you understand that there is a different skill set to managing than there is to creating a new business.

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