This echoes much of what Mark said in the last blog, because once again it’s about the value of people. We may seem like stuck records when it comes to this subject, but after what it is that a company does (it’s product) it’s the most important factor. Everything, good or bad stems from that!
Mark and I have been running UrbanLeaf for many years. When we were in our infancy, we did literally everything; (in no particular order) booked sites, liaised with clients, took recruitment calls, selected and trained fundraisers, managed performance, administrated and made cups of tea.
At that stage you have a choice, stay the same forever, or grow and improve. In order to do the latter you have to find other people to take jobs away from you, so you can focus on increasingly important things. It’s hard! There are many barriers to achieving this, the real one is finding great people, but there are plenty of ones that only live in your head – from trust issues (I am a recovering control freak), to the egotism of believing you can do any given job the best (pretty ridiculous huh), letting go is not easy. Ultimately, if you want to work on your business and not in it (something Paul Brown talked about a lot), you have to.
The truth is, now we have people that are better than us at every job we ever did. We never stopped replacing ourselves and now we haven’t got much left to do. All that remains is that we are the keepers of our principles (although even here we are constantly humbled by the dedication in UrbanLeaf to do things the right way), the most important principle being that we are only great if our team is great. If we hold to that, Mark and I can carry on being useless (and sometimes making the tea)!