As a CEO or small business owner, you may find yourself wearing many different hats from time to time.
I worked with a home services business owner who hired a team of people at varying levels to support his marketing, sales, finance, and operations. However, he was even busier than before he hired them, working late every night and on the weekend. This happened because he had not yet come to trust his team. A big reason for not entirely relying on them was because so much of how he wanted his business run was still in his head. He felt like he needed to be involved in each step of the process to make sure it was executed correctly.
Now back to you. You are the CEO for a reason. You can see the big picture and know where action needs to be taken. However, sometimes this means you end up in the weeds. Perhaps you find yourself spending hours working on marketing materials, or you blew half a day managing your sales team.
If you ever get the chance to come up for air, you could take a step back and see that this is not the best use of your time and expertise. But how do you manage this?
Here are three steps that you can take right away to make a difference.
Leverage CRM and Automation Technology
First of all, properly leveraging technology is one great way to streamline processes and take the workload off yourself. Customer relationship management (CRM) platforms and marketing automation are two great tools to increase sales and save time. There are a lot of questions you need to ask when selecting a CRM. Check out these eight considerations you should keep in mind. Do any of these sound familiar?
- It doesn’t track the information you need
- The team doesn’t have the time to learn something new
- It doesn’t match your process
- Salespeople prefer tracking on spreadsheets
- It’s just for data storage
- You’ve been working OK with it for years
- It’s too cumbersome
When selecting a CRM, ensure that it provides your team with a unified, integral platform and that your team is fully trained on and vested in the product.
Consider Delegating to a Fractional Leader
Next up, delegate. Sure this sounds simple enough, but do you have someone you can trust to do the job, right? As a CEO, you need people who work with you, not just for you. If you look around and don’t have the right person on your team, consider hiring a fractional leader. By hiring an experienced professional to be part of your leadership team, they can collaborate, lead and drive execution around a specific core function of your business.
Develop and Implement a Sales Process
Finally, develop a sales process and enforce it at all levels, including lead generation and tracking. This is a big one — it will take the time you likely do not think you have to put in place. However, in the end, it will make all the difference for you, probably giving you back weeks of your time every year. Who doesn’t want a couple of free weeks, so you don’t feel obligated to work on vacation?
What happened to our busy business owner?
After bringing in a fractional chief operating officer, or COO, and a fractional chief sales and marketing officer, or CSMO, our business owner was able to get all of his processes documented by his team so that they understood and followed them. Plus, he and his team began leveraging the technology and framework the fractional leaders put in place. His home services business grew since he could focus on the big picture again and even take some time off to celebrate his accomplishments with his wife and children!
Follow the three steps above, and you too can go back to doing what you love to do and not what you feel obligated to do.
About the Author
Kristen Diviney McGarr, the co-founder/CEO of Infinite Insights and founder/fractional CSMO of Adroit Insights, has more than 15 years of experience as a sales management and business executive for small businesses and Franchise 500 companies. Learn more about Kristen here.