Generalising from the Specific

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2021

An old client contacted me recently. He was feeling stuck again and thinking about getting some more coaching.

Thanks to his drive and ability his business has grown by about 500% since we last worked together three years ago. He has overcome the barrier of just expecting employees to know what to do, and has sorted out his back office structure, processes and systems so he can delegate, let go and focus on growth.

So why more coaching? It seems as if his operational stuff is performing inconsistently and lacks visibility compared with his improved back-office. One of his long-time employees is leaving. He is slipping back into thinking that systems solve problems rather than leadership solving them. He lacks confidence in approaching this problem and can’t see a clear plan or way forward.

We talked for an hour or so about this. I felt slightly uninspiring as we went over the same ground: Clear accountability, unambiguous targets, simple written processes, routine review, measurement and improvement. I think perhaps some business owners struggle to generalise from the specific, to see that every business is a chain of essentially similar flows and balances, blockages and leaks, and that a solution in one area is portable to another.

Of course, it is easy to see this from outside and far more difficult when you are the one trying to keep all the cogs spinning. The point of using a coach is I suppose only partly in the answers (most of which are blindingly obvious anyway). The main benefit is in having someone to provide that view from outside the machine.

(If delegating, letting go and focusing on growth is something you’d like to do more of you might be interested in this course.)

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