Areas of Excellence

When you are talking about creating and running a business, one of the most important factors is you.  In particular, what you are good at. This will become the focus of who you are as part of your business.

Think of yourself as the hub of a wheel.  You are the fulcrum of action in the business.  So, what leverage can you bring?  The things that you are personally good at will provide the greatest leverage.  To that end, you must identify the things that you are best at.  This can be an exercise of some challenge.  We like to view ourselves at good at many things.  Here we need complete and utter honesty with oneself.  If you can do that, you can find the things that you know you are exceptional at.

For example, I am a great predictor of the future based on few data points.  My intuition often steers me correctly to the decisions I need to make for the future.  It allows me to be good at Strategy and Planning.  I can predict where the bumps will likely come from and have contingency plans for them.

The counter is true as well. I often lose the Tactical Trees from the Strategy Forest.  It helps me greatly to partner with people with Tactics as a strength.  Together, we build a better team.  We play off the strengths of the other.  That kind of diversity helps a business grow and be successful.  These partners do not have to be employees.  They can be subcontractors or vendors that you give assignments.  The key here is to figure out who will be your inner circle of advisers, whether they be inside or outside the business.

If you are not sure how to identify those Areas of Excellence within yourself, then the right thing to do is to talk to former colleagues and customers.  They can give you insight on what they found out in working with you.  This can be a bit of an eye opener, so you need to be ready for things that you did not expect to hear.  I have done this in the form of a 360-degree survey of people (Boss, Peer, Subordinate, Customer) and received some excellent feedback for myself. This truly helped me grow!

Once these Areas of Excellence have been identified, you need to build these into the business that you want to build.  Think of this as how you are going to differentiate yourself from others.  That special combination that is you will build the capabilities that you need to grow your business!

 Jim Sackman

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