The hill was more than I bargained for.  It was a struggle and I should have realized earlier that is was time to act now.

I had all kinds of excuses: the weather was bad.  I didn’t have time.  It could wait another day.  I had other plans.

No, I wasn’t hiking up a steep section of trail or riding my mountain bike up a hill.  I was mowing my yard. If you have ever used a manual reel mower in a bermudagrass lawn, you know what I am talking about.

You can’t put off cutting the grass or the work required to cut it goes up exponentially.  The grass grows taller and thicker every day.  It is much easier to stay on top of it before it gets out of control.

The issues we face in business or life are the same.  Avoid, ignoring, or putting off the issue rarely makes it easier to deal or go away.  Usually it just makes it harder to deal with later.

For example, an employee who isn’t a good fit isn’t going to just change.  They will create friction with others on the team or not produce the results you want.  You either must intervene through giving feedback, or you have to remove them from the team or the company.

And while you wait to take action, the damage they cause continues to mount.  Bad attitudes become contagious.  People leave to find

Decisions and actions about upgrading your infrastructure, replacing your software, adding or removing products and services you offer are no different.  And you aren’t going to magically get in better shape physically or strengthen relationships with inaction.

If you need to make a change or address a problem, act now.  Don’t let it become a bigger challenge than it has to be.

OPG can help you assess your situation and walk with you as you take action. You can reach out to us here CONTACT US or connect with us on https://www.linkedin.com/in/cmatt/

Sometimes you initiate change, and sometimes it is forced on you.  Regardless of how you got there, you must deal with it.  Facing change isn’t always easy or wanted.

Key employees leave.  New technology disrupts the market.  Your exit strategy or timeline changes.  Maybe your business has grown beyond your capacity to manage it all effectively.

As a business grows, business owners eventually come to a point where they need a leadership team to share the load.  Depending on the where the company is, hiring full-time executives may not be needed or even financially realistic.  The decision to expand the leadership time is a change you initiate.

The sudden loss of a key leader is but one change that is forced on you.  You must decide how to re-organize the workload and responsibilities or to find and replace that leader.

In all these situations, a fractional COO can step in.  They can be a part-time resource to bridge the gap until you are ready and need a full-time executive.  They can also help define the COO role so you can find the right candidate.  Whether you need someone for a few hours per week or several days per week, you can keep the business moving forward.

Opal Partners offers COO Bridge as a way to help businesses bridge the gap when they need to add to their leadership team but aren’t ready for a full-time resource.

If your business is facing change and a fractional COO can help you, CONTACT US  or find us at https://www.linkedin.com/in/cmatt/.

 

“To everything there is a season…”

The writer of Ecclesiastes first recorded this timeless truth which was later popularized in music by The Byrds in the Pete Seeger song Turn! Turn! Turn!

The words remind us that the world is in constant change and that seasons come and go only to be repeated again.  Each one of us – and every business – will face changes as we go through life.  Nothing is constant or static, and nothing we can do will change that reality.

That means we and our businesses must adapt.  We must recognize when seasons are changing, when conditions indicate that we need to re-evaluate, adapt, and change.

a time to plant and a time to uproot… a time to tear down and a time to build… a time to keep and a time to throw away.

The words tell us there is “a time to plant and a time to uproot… a time to tear down and a time to build… a time to keep and a time to throw away.”

What can we do with these words of wisdom?

Individually, we will endure change.  We must embrace it and recognize that it is a simple fact of life.  We have the power to choose how we respond to change and use it to foster our personal growth.

For businesses, it means there is a time to plan and plant seeds for future growth.  This may mean expanding your business with new locations, adding new products or services, or growing your team.  By extension, there will be a season in which you will reap the rewards of these actions and efforts.

Conversely, there will come a time when these things no longer provide the results you want.  A product will eventually be replaced by something newer, better, or cheaper.  Old ways of doing things will give way to newer ones.  The market will change and certain things will no longer be viable or needed.  When these things happen – and they will – a leader must recognize that a new season is approaching and make tough, even painful, decisions.

You may be facing a new season right now.  If so, do you recognize it, and are you willing to make the changes you need?

OPG can help you with the changes your business faces.  CONTACT US  or connect with us at https://linkedin.com/in/cmatt.

An employee of one of my clients wanted to talk to me about a project he was assigned.  He had made no progress on it for over 90 days.  Something was holding him back. He opened the conversation by saying “I don’t think I can do this.”

I began asking questions.

Within a few minutes, we identified the project didn’t have a natural home with any one person or department.  It required customer communication, technical know-how, and an understanding of the company’s products and services. However, the team member assigned the project had all the skills and knowledge needed.

Something else was going on.  Actually, several things were keeping him stuck in the starting blocks.

He was busy with his daily tasks and the urgent requests that dropped in his lap.  FranklinCovey refers to this as the “whirlwind of the day-to-day.”  The Urgent was prioritized over the Important.

He had let the project languish for so long, he was tired of reporting to the leadership team that he had made no progress.  He let doubt about his ability to do the project creep into his own mind as well as the management team’s.

The longer he put the project off, the more daunting it became.

After some discussion, we came to a realization:  either he truly couldn’t do the project, or he didn’t know how to start.  I told him we wouldn’t know which case was true until he actually tried to do it.

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step.”

I helped him break down the project into a series of small tasks and milestones.  We identified natural checkpoints to verify he was on the right track.  Suddenly, the project didn’t seem so scary.  It wasn’t looming over him.

He had a plan.  He had someone to hold him accountable. He became excited about actually tackling the project.  He began working on it.

What’s holding you back from beginning a project or making a change you need to make?

If you’d like to talk to a fractional COO about starting new projects and accountability, contact us at CONTACT US.  You can also reach us at https://linkedin.com/in/cmatt.

 

In our bodies, our DNA is the genetic code that makes us unique individuals.  It contains all the instructions needed to build a complex, living, breathing organism.  DNA is the master of each cell and is passed on through successive generations.  Our DNA determines our physical characteristics, and damage to our DNA can cause problems that range from minor to catastrophic.

Your company has its own DNA – those things that make it unique, give it vitality, and must be passed on as it grows.

A business’s DNA is comprised of two components:

  • What we do
  • Why we do what we do

“What we do” describes our ideal customer – the customer we are uniquely set up to serve well maximizing the strengths of our organization.  It also answers the question “why do customers choose us?”  It is your market niche but it goes much deeper and understands why you can claim that niche.

“Why we do what we do” describes you.  It informs the entire team of the passion and purpose that led to the creation of your company.  It defines the values that are present in the organization and must be modeled and protected if the company is to survive and thrive.

Understanding your company’s DNA is the first step in building a strategic plan that works.  Your company DNA guides and defines everything about your business.  Make sure it is defined, known, and used to make decisions.

Many people are re-examining their businesses due to changes caused by technology and the health emergency.  If you want to build a durable, resilient business, your company DNA is your anchor.  It will keep you from drifting wherever the winds blow.  Knowing who you are lets you build on your strengths rather than reacting to circumstances.

Contact us if you need help mapping your company DNA.  https://opalpg.com/contact-us/

http://linkedin.com/in/cmatt

The Brady Bunch sang “when it’s time to change, then it’s time to change, from who you are into what you’re gonna be.”

How is your business going to change AFTER the COVID-19 crisis and things begin to look a little more normal?

You’ve been forced to learn, adapt, and change with some level of success or failure to face the current reality. We are all waiting to get back to normal.

But normal is going to look a little different. Customer and team member expectations will change. New products and services will be born and old ones will fade away.  We may have new rules and regulations.  What worked before may not be sufficient or desirable tomorrow.

The question becomes “How will you make your company better based on your experience during the crisis?”  You need to begin thinking about how you re-envision your company’s future, what your business version 2.0 looks like.

If you aren’t thinking about this yet, you should be. You will have to answer this sooner than you think.

We are here to help.  Contact us at https://www.linkedin.com/in/cmatt/ or https://opalpg.com/contact-us/