Are you conflicted with business owners guilt? You aren’t the only one!
How’s it going? I’ve got a question for you. I am legitimately interested in what your answer is and what your opinion is. Before I ask you the question, I’ve got to give you two statements of fact. These are basically things that I believe that frame my outlook. One, I believe you are the leader of your company. I believe you set the example. I believe you set the tone. I believe you are charged with creating the culture of your business. Two, I believe that most people build a business that is nothing more than a business, a high paying in some cases, job. When in fact what you really should be doing is building an investment. When you think about whatever it is you’re building as an investment and not as a business, you act differently. You think differently. You do things differently. You invest differently.
An investment is one where you’re building a company that could run without you. You could be gone for a year, the thing keeps growing, it keeps spitting off cash and it pays you a distribution. You are not the bottleneck of that business. Knowing both of those things, I generally work everyday. I generally work most Saturdays unless we’re traveling or on vacation or I might run out to catch a soccer game or something of that sort. Most Saturdays I’m working if I’m in town. This past Saturday it was fantastic outside, it was 70 degrees, it felt great. I just didn’t feel like driving to the office, there might have been three or four people at the office. I didn’t drive to the office. I sat outside and worked on my laptop, but I felt quite a bit of guilt for doing that because I have a team that’s not required to come to the office.
Yet a number of people come to the office, not every Saturday, but many Saturdays. If I don’t show up, what are they thinking? Are they thinking I’m just not working this Saturday, I’m just taking it off while they’re busting their ass working. Likewise, I don’t generally come to the office until 10:00 in the morning. That’s a factor. There’s several reasons for that. One, sometimes I work late at night, so I sleep in. Sometimes I get up early and work and get work done before I get to the office and anybody bothers me. Other days I get up and I workout for an extended period of time and I don’t really do much work before I get to the office. What’s the perception of the team?
Do they know I’m working? Do they realize I’m working really hard or do they feel that I’m just leaving everything to them, because I feel that setting an example is critically important. At the same time building an investment is one where the team does the work. My question to you is, how important is it to come in on Saturday when others are at the office? Which I normally do, but I felt great guilt for not doing it. How important is it that I arrive at 8:00 in the morning versus 10:00 in the morning? Even though I’m working. Even though I work at night while everybody else was sleeping or doing something else. The team doesn’t know that. I’m not going to walk around telling them what I’m doing all the time.
Is it important to show up and be there even if it’s not the most optimal schedule just so you can set a good tone? I tend to think it is. I’ve been conflicted by a few of these items. Historically I’ve always been at the office. As I have more of a team around me I don’t have to show up in the morning. There’s other people that can fight fires and deal with stuff. I can work on the bigger activities. Which I really believe and you have to position yourself. You’ve got to get yourself where you have time to think. You have time to work on big stuff. These are things I don’t normally talk about in Lawn Care Millionaire.
I don’t normally talk about the idea of building an investment versus a business. These are things I deal with heavily in Service Autopilot Academy, but this is a much bigger audience and I’m super curious. How important is it that you come to the office every Saturday? How important is it that you come to the office before everybody else in the morning? You just suck it up and you do that even though it’s not the most optimal thing to do, in that it doesn’t give you undivided time where nobody can ask you a question. Where you can think through things. What do you think? Should owners feel guilt about living a different schedule than what they ask of everyone else in their organization? What do you think?