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The 7 Questions you need to ask when building your leadership team

Inspired by Bruce Eckfeldt https://www.linkedin.com/in/beckfeldt 

The biggest decision you will make as an entrepreneur as your business grows is who is on your leadership team. 

A team who will boost you up and not drag you down.

As a business grows , so do the leaders of the business….. And nobody needs to grow and change more than the entrepreneur and the CEO.

Here is a typical scenario of “Jill the Entrepreneur”

In the early stages of the Enterprise, Jill has an idea or a passion – and decides to “create” a business which starts doing really well. Customers start buying and the business starts growing!!!


Jill needs to be good at everything  focussing on understanding customers and market, employing people, designing products and services, finance, marketing and selling, building websites and a whole lot more!!!

She is the CEO – the Captain of the Ship – the Heart and Soul of the Organisation!

5% of the Entrepreneurs time is now spent on 95% of stuff that she is not good at – and quite often forgets why she started the business anyway! 

Jill now needs to be more like a CEO, and shift her  focus to designing and building the organization and culture.

For the business to succeed – in my view – is for her to keep her focus on what made her start the business in the first place (spend 95% of what she is great and passionate at) and start to build a team around her.

She will need to build a team of Leaders that will expand and manage the different parts of the business. 

Bruce Eckfeldt, Leadership Coach, Author, Speaker and Podcast host, shares with us the 7 Questions that YOU as a CEO, need to answer to build the right team around you. 

If you feel that you are not suited to be a CEO, find one that can build, inspire, enthuse and engage the right team, and gain the confidence and trust of the relevant stakeholders (including investors) .

You need to build

  • A team with the right Vision, Values and Culture that fit with you.
  • A team that will be able to think strategically and execute with confidence and efficiency.
  • A team that will enable you to continue to weave your magic on what you do best and keep doing what made you so successful in the first place:

So, here are the 7 Qurstions:- 

1. Do you know yourself?

Before you start selecting who will be on your team, it’s critical that you step back and look at your own strengths, weaknesses, style, and habits. 

The best CEOs are highly aware of their own shortcomings and blind spots, and they make sure that the team they build will round them out and help cover bases they can’t.

2. What are the limits of your knowledge and skills?

Make sure that you don’t build a team of “yes people.” 

They add nothing to the conversation and only look to curry favor and avoid criticism. 

Great CEOs have the confidence and humility to surround themselves with people much smarter than they are. 

This will expand the capabilities of the team and deepen the team’s experiences and insights.

3. What will help you in the future market?

Another consideration is what market understanding or experience will benefit the team. 

Choosing executives who have been in other companies or have worked in a particular industry or market can be extremely valuable if you lack knowledge or history in a critical area. 

Bring in people who have “been there, done that” so you can avoid common mistakes.

4. What are the limits of your experiences?

When putting together a team, make sure that you have a range of backgrounds. 

If everyone’s coming out of a startup, you’ll have a blind spot for mid-market challenges. 

Bringing in people with backgrounds in small and large companies will give you different perspectives. 

Also consider things like products/services, sales cycles, market maturity, and geographies and/or cultures.

5. Where can you increase gender, ethic, and cultural diversity?

You want your team to have a gender balance and diverse background. 

2015 McKinsey study found that teams who had more ethnic and racially diverse leadership teams had 35 percent higher returns and that teams with greater gender balance had 15 percene higher returns. 

Creating diversity at the top will more likely drive diversity throughout the organization.

6. What is your natural thinking style?

Another area that diversity is important is thinking style. 

If you’re a shoot from the hip kind of CEO (like me) then you’ll want to balance that out with some cautious and analytical thinkers. 

Because  these people may drive you nuts at times, they might also save you from a rash decision that could harm the future of the company.

7. What are your core values?

While diversity in gender, culture, and thinking style are important, you don’t want people who have radically different personal or ethical values. 

Be sure to articulate your company values and your personal values and surround yourself with people who are well aligned with them. 

If service to the community is important to you and your company, bringing in someone at the top who has never volunteered a day in their life will cause friction and undermine trust.

Creating a great leadership team is not easy. It takes critical thinking, excellent recruiting, and hard decision making. It also takes time and patience. 

Done wrong, it can lead a company unwittingly down the wrong path and hinder growth. But done right, it can boost a CEO and elevate the company to higher and higher levels of performance.

These questions  were originally published on Inc.com: https://www.inc.com/bruce-eckfeldt/great-ceos-surround-themselves-with-best-leadership-team-heres-how-to-create-yours.html

If you are open to be inspired and be a part of a virtual team of business owners and leaders that is focussed on collaboration, learning and growth, join us for a breakfast as my guest to see whether there is a fit! Here is the link  www.bbg.business

If you are keen to build a forum with me, please feel free to contact me – here is my virtual business card compliments of referron. https://members.referron.com/bsivc?id=61

Posted on April 27, 2019

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