Reactive business owners will always have reactive businesses; when the economy slumps, so will their revenue. Proactive business leadership, however, can contain the impact of market fluctuations, and carry the additional advantages of: a stable cash flow, flexibility in plans for operational improvements, increased marketing impact and readiness for growth. Here are five steps to thinking and leading proactively.
Get a handle on your time.
Developing solid time management skills doesn’t start the first time you’re able to leave your business at a reasonable hour; it requires commitment. How do you get better at it? For starters, spend five minutes at the end of each day to review: What decisions did you make? How long did it take you to make them? How did you prioritize what do you need to do tomorrow?
Trust your people.
Good employees like to rise to a challenge and are happier when they have some autonomy. Your job is to empower them to address problems on their own. Trusting your employees is a decision you make, not a feeling you have. You may feel nervous, but it’s a critical step in your business’ development to, for instance, let your parts manager handle the inventory.
Once you start assuming—and expecting—the best, not the worst, from your employees, you’ll likely get it.