Each year on Halloween, children—and plenty of adults—put on costumes to become something else. Whatever the persona of choice, it’s a chance to pretend and emphasize different characteristics. You can lean into those traits and become more like that superhero or movie character that’s larger than life.
Leaning into traits that you wish you possessed isn’t just for Halloween costumes though. Small business owners who want next-level growth will need to lean into a new character and get comfortable behaving like a CEO. We’re talking strategic planning, forecasting, and budgeting—which is the fun stuff for all of us here at Officeheads. (Almost as fun as donning costumes and getting buckets of candy.)
Entrepreneur vs. CEO: What’s the Difference?
Running a small business requires plenty of CEO-type behaviors. But there is a distinctive difference between an entrepreneur and a CEO in terms of perspective. Entrepreneurs are often scrappy go-getters, ready to do whatever it takes to succeed. Whether it’s financial strategy or taking out the garbage or running errands, an entrepreneur covers the gaps. And this is a great thing! Small businesses won’t survive without a leader who gives it everything they’ve got.
However, the CEO sees business a bit differently. A CEO is more strategic in nature, shifting efforts from day-to-day survival to long-term growth and expansion. The CEO sees a path that moves the business into a new era. It’s a vision for how the daily survival mode chaos gives way to sustainable growth and profitability.
Grab Your CEO Costume
How can you shift your perspective from entrepreneur to CEO? The good news is there’s no one way. And that’s the bad news too—there’s no 10-step process to adopt. But there are key practices all CEOs walk out. By leaning into these CEO behaviors, you’ll develop the CEO perspective needed to grow. Here are just a few you can adopt starting today:
Year-End Budgeting & Planning
CEOs are primarily visionary planners not just reactive problem solvers. That’s going to require budgeting at the end of each year for the one to come. And now’s the time! As you enter the last two months of the calendar year, set aside some time for comprehensive 12-month planning.
Take some time to review your 12 areas of internal management to see what’s happening in 2021 and to plan what you’d like to see in 2022. How will each area contribute to the budgeting and plans you want to reach? Be specific, writing down how you see each area helping you get from where you are to where you want to be—and how you will get there using the resources available.
While the planning starts now, it’s not a once-and-done activity. CEOs keep the business on-track toward those goals by conducting quarterly reviews to compare your actual progress to the budget, then discerning the adjustments needed to move ahead. If you’ve fallen short of your goals, you need to figure out why and solve it. And if you’ve exceeded your goals, you need to ascertain what contributed to the success and see if you can replicate it for the next quarter.
Moving from scrappy entrepreneur to visionary CEO takes time. But it will help you grow your business to the next level of success! If you are ready to lean into your inner CEO and would like some help, Officeheads is ready! We can help you lean into these CEO practices to make 2022 your best year yet.