Building a business that runs perfectly without you has been described by business leaders as institutionalizing your business. To illustrate further, building an institutional business is building a business that can operate successfully without you being in charge of the centre of activities. It is building a business that is independent of you and can as well outlive you.
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Tony Elumelu, Chairman of UBA Bank and Founder of Heirs Holdings, once told an audience at a Business Summit that UBA has five to six people within the leadership pipeline that quickly take over the mantle of Chairmanship or MD even if he is absent or no more. It takes a great deal of strategy to build such kind of business.
Building a business that runs perfectly without you comes with a lot of benefits. First, it guarantees longevity even without you; second, it gives you time to pursue other passions; third, it gives you time to relax and create time for those that matter to you.
In this article, I outline six ways to build a business that can run perfectly without you:
The first step towards building a business that runs perfectly without you is to kill the hero culture prevalent in your company. By this, I mean, you have made your business stop revolving around you and built a team of equally qualified persons like you. If you are the rainmaker of your business, you have to equally distribute the power to make rain amongst trusted team members.
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When you do this, there are more than two rainmakers and more heroes within your company.
Another way to ensure that business is running perfectly without you is to be teammates who are equal stakeholders in the company. For example, leading and successful companies have vice presidents, co-founders, chief operation officers, other C-Suite members, and even staff members who are equal investors and as well stakeholders.
The consequence of doing this is that everyone who has a stake in your business will want to ensure that the business is up and running. This results in employees who act like owners when you’re not around. Moreover, there will be more accountability.
Powerful companies that run independently of the founder or CEO have developed playbooks that serve as an instructional manual for new and old employees. Within the playbook, employees and the leadership are governed by the instructions and the laid down rules, which inform their decisions.
Further, your business playbook contains a set of rules employees can follow for repetitive tasks in your company. By drafting this, your employees will have a rulebook they can follow when you’re absent, and when there is an exit of an employee, you can quickly integrate a new replacement that can quickly take on the job.
Draft Your Business Playbook
Building a business that can run perfectly without you as the founder is about outlining exclusive and non-exclusive functions.
Outline Exclusive And Non-Exclusive Roles
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It is important that as a founder, you are not totally off the hook. Certain functions need your attention such as meeting with high-profile customers, annual auditing, etc. On the other hand, you can delegate other roles such as sales and marketing, daily accounting, customer service, and so on.
Another strategy to apply if you want to run a business that runs perfectly without you at the centre of activities is to train your staff/team with the latest professional and career education suitable for their roles within the company. The more professional they are, the less likely for you to be worried about performance.
If you are the company’s best salesperson, but you want your company to keep making sales while you are absent, then you have to create a business model where customers buy from you automatically. Consider creating a service contract with your customers that offers to fulfill one of their ongoing needs regularly.
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Create Automatic Customers
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This article was first published on 12th June 2022