The right attitude can move a failing project into a better place by changing the expectations of the leader.
For small business and charity leaders making an impact in their community, two professional roles will help them focus on building teams, equipping them and leading them to accomplishing a productive goal.
These two professional roles are a community organizer and a strategic planner.
These attitudes are a different viewpoint than the strong, working class work ethic many are used to. We were raised to find a specific job on someone else’s team, get equipment from them and perform a set of tasks well. This is an excellent attitude for time service workers, but not for leaders. Which is why many leaders exhaust themselves and send their businesses into early graves! Leaders who try to be a part of the team—on the ground floor, putting in their 9-to-5 hours—miss out on growing their small business or charity.
Community organizing and strategic planning are professions not about day-to-day work, but how you organize why your team works. Focus on what community organizers and strategic planners do and your service will grow stronger, faster.
The Leader’s Job
The Losing Attitude: It’s my job to insure day-to-day operations occur well and that the organization is well-represented.
The Organizer’s Attitude: It’s my job to insure that my team has the resources and training they need and that they focus on accomplishing our task.
The Planner’s Attitude: It’s my job to insure that the organization grows, stays ahead of competition, and stays relevant in the minds of our market base.
The Result: Leaders who don’t focus on growth don’t control their growth. Leaders who don’t recruit and support an engaged team are doomed to micromanage everything—a waste of time and money.
The Leader’s Status
The Losing Attitude: I’m too small/too local of a business or charity to take advantage of certain opportunities. My size limits who I can hire, where I can sell and who I can work with.
The Organizer’s Attitude: I will activate whoever to accomplish our team’s task. As citizens, we have the right—the responsibility, even—to alert business and government to our needs.
The Planner’s Attitude: We do business in a unique way to not only make our work enjoyable, but to attract a wide and well-paying market. Local office doesn’t mean local market.
The Result: Leaders who think local means limited, think limitedly. Million-dollar opportunities are invisible to them and they can’t give their work their 100% dedication.
The Leader’s Purpose
The Losing Attitude: This organization exists to let me be the boss, to work on my own schedule, and to pay my bills. It will reward me by getting me money and causing me the least amount of problems.
The Organizer’s Attitude: Charity exists to unite friends in self-improvement. I will be rewarded by the community for activating people to help each other more efficiently, for aligning goals and getting resources for them quickly.
The Planner’s Attitude: Business exists to excel at producing and distributing society’s needs. I will be rewarded by the market for treating clients with respect, for interpreting needs and responding to them quickly.
The Result: Leaders who idealize owning a small business or charity as a way for them to fulfill themselves ignore the truth—success comes from focusing on the advocates.