Have You Committed To Being The Strategic Leader of Your Business?

That may sound like an obvious question, but you might be surprised.

If your business is easy to run because of efficient systems, is kind to you and your family, can operate without you and is profitable, you can proudly answer with a resounding YES! What you’ve created is a successful business and a sellable asset. Bravo!

But if your business is a big headache that requires a lot of time and effort from you and cannot run without you, what you actually own is your very own 24/7 JOB. Which is really not so great.
business vs job
I say it’s a 24/7 JOB because unlike a regular job, you cannot get away from it. I’m guessing your mind is almost always on your business, whether you’re physically located at your office or not. Am I right or am I right?

If I had to choose for you, having already been there myself, I would without a doubt choose for you to have an easy, smooth running business that affords you the time and MONEY to enjoy a fulfilling personal life…

rather than having you constantly chasing after new customers, worrying about what your employees are doing or not doing, paying mountains of bills, and basically running yourself into the ground.

In a series of articles, I’m going to help you gain control and maintain control of your business and it all starts with strategic thinking.

Michael Gerber, known for his E-Myth books, says in The E-Myth Contractor, “Strategic thinking will enable you to create a business that works apart from you instead of because of you.” And he goes on to say “For it business family imageis my view that until you… approach your business strategically, you will never own a business that’s friendly to you, that’s kind to you, and takes care of you and your family.”

How kind and friendly to you and your family is your business? What would your family say? 😉

Strategic thinking involves having a vision of what your business can and should become and developing ways to benefit from the challenges and opportunities before it.

Good strategic leaders are systems thinkers. Systems help you to consistently achieve the desired result, time after time. Systems are what should actually be running your business, not you and not your employees.

If there is something in your business that’s not working well and you have no systems in place, growing will only make it worse by multiplying the problem.

It is ultimately systems that allow you to create duplicative processes. And duplicative processes are at the very heart of all highly successful and profitable businesses.

Arrows and blocksAs you may be experiencing right now or have experienced sometime in the past, growing without first creating systems will drive you crazy and make you regret ever having started the business in the first place.

The best way to sharpen your skills in the areas of strategic thinking and planning is to create a well thought out business plan.

Planning gives you control. If you don’t already have a business plan, you’re not alone. I know people who have been in business for over 20 years and still don’t have one.

Although there may be some rare exceptions, most of these businesses have failed to maximize their full potential and have failed to provide the owner or owners with optimal profitability and freedom.

I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “fail to plan and you plan to fail”.

Not so uplifting, but true nonetheless. On a more positive note, how about, “plan your work, then work your plan”.

I like this one much better because it’s easy for me to do just about any form of planning. If you’re going to plan for something, it might as well be profitability and success.

Your business plan is your plan for success. Without one, you’re not planning for success.

If you’re not planning for success in your business, what you’re doing is more like running a hobby.

If you already have a business plan, know that you’re in the minority of small business owners. I applaud you for not skipping over this very important foundational business practice.

With that being said, unless you just finalized your business plan last month, I still advise you to revisit creating your company vison, establishing clarity around who is managing your business, and creating your business plan. This will allow you to re-examine your plan and tweak it for optimal performance.

large vision






Creating Your Company Vision

Before we discuss the formal business plan, let’s take a moment to get you in the proper mind set for strategic thinking.

As the leader of your business you are responsible for creating a company vision and communicating it to those who help you. A company vision can be an “ideal” you strive to achieve. It can be a goal for the future of the business.

Whatever it is, it must be something you can feel with a great deal of passion and enthusiasm.

It’s a reason to spring out of bed in the morning.We_Have_Greatness_Within_Us

It should inspire the strategic thinker inside you to build an incredible business.

It should inspire your employees to give 110%.

It should inspire your customers to want to do business with you.

Wow, that’s a big job for your “vision” to carry out, isn’t it?

But with a strong vision statement that truly resonates you and your employees, the job can seem easy and rewarding and fun.

An example would be:

“Dedication to our clients is at the heart of everything we do, and our passion to create real value for them drives the relentless pursuit to understand and fulfill their requirements. Our talented people/partners and their strong personal accountability are a source of our competitive strength. We say what we do; we do what we say. Once we have made a decision, we act together in harmony, which allows us to execute with excellence and deliver on our promises.”

Go ahead and take a few moments to jot down some key points you’ll want to include in your company vision statement. Then revisit your list again tomorrow with the intention of expanding on these key points.

Letting the key points roll through your mind for a day should be helpful in formulating how you’ll expand on them for your company vision.

Here are some great articles on the topic of creating your vision that I think you’ll find helpful:vision-button

  1. Leadership Success Always Starts With Vision

In this inspirational article, John Ryan shares the story and vision of Wendy Kopp, who founded Teach For America.

  1. What Leading With Vision Really Means

The author of the book, Leading So People Will Follow, Erika Andersen, share’s her refreshing perspective on the usefulness of farsightedness in building a super successful company.

  1. How to Develop a Leadership Vision

This is a WikiHow offering a step by step process for developing your vison based on 3 pillars. It can be a helpful exercise to go through.

I’ll leave you with some of my favorite quotations on the topics of leadership and vision to inspire you.

“In order to carry a positive action we must develop here a positive vision.” — Dalai Lama

“The difference between a boss and a leader: a boss says, ‘Go!’ – a leader says, ‘Let’s go!’”. — E. M. Kelly

“A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.” — John Maxwell


“You won’t get anything unless you have the vision to imagine it.” — John Lennon




“Leaders don’t force people to follow, they invite them on a journey.” — Charles S. Lauer

Next Steps:

  1. Commit to becoming the Strategic Leader of your business
  1. Start your business plan by Creating Your Company Vision



3Vania Clark-Butler is an Infusionsoft Certified Consultant (ICC) and self-proclaimed power user since 2005. Process oriented, she shares Infusionsoft best practices to help you get set up the right way to optimize your software. For fun, she enjoys cooking, Kundalini yoga, business podcasts, and spending time outdoors with her husband and their two exuberant boxers exploring the Arizona desert. - See more at: http://www.automatingsuccess.com.