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This post was written by HighGrove CEO, Jim McCutcheon.

building a businessI am not running a company; I am building a business. 

How many business owners can truthfully say this?  I am proud to say I can.  It has not always been this way but it has always been a goal. The moves I have made over the years have gotten me to this point.  This is a critical step in building an enduring enterprise

I believe that business owners must have a personal vision and a vision for their business.  And it goes without saying that they must be aligned.

The personal vision starts with deciding what kind of company you want to build.  In my mind there are two kinds:

The Lifestyle Business

This is one that you enjoy working in and provides you with a comfortable living.  Often times this business is run with the owner making most of the decisions. 

Growth may be slower in that one person is limited in what they can handle in a day.  In many cases, profit is not a major concern as the business covers the needs of the owner. 

This type of business often has a limited lifecycle as the business often falters when the owner decides to move on to a new phase in life. 

The Enduring Enterprise

This type of business is built by an owner that intends for it to thrive after he/she moves on or can be sold as it is operated by many different leaders and has built equity over the years. 

This business does not need the owner to make all the decisions. It can grow beyond the owner's capabilities and talents because he/she found and developed talent that is better at the task at hand than they are. 

Neither of these models is right nor wrong.  It is a personal preference but one that needs to be made early on.  The decision will impact the operations, leadership structure, finance and sales and marketing strategies. 

Whatever your decision, the next step is to create a clear vision of what your company will do and where it is headed.  This does not have to be complicated but it must come from the owner.  It is YOUR vision.

From there, your role is to build a team that you can motivate to make the vision a reality.  The team is responsible for the Mission of getting you to the vision.

The slogan for the football team on the TV show Friday Night Lights was “Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose!” 

This should be true for your business as well.  “Clear eyes” is a clear vision for the team.  “Full hearts” is the motivation you provide to make the vision a reality.  Do this for your company and you “Won’t lose”.

image credit: SodanieChea


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