Often as home based business owners we feel a sense of overwhelm. I have recently revisited Michael Gerber’s book, The E Myth which helps us understand why this is the case. If we are doing our business alone we actually have to be three people in one – no wonder at times we feel very exhausted!
I first read The E Myth about 20 years ago. It was the first time I heard the distinction about working “on” your business as opposed to “in” it. A bit scary really as I have a Business Degree!
I have worked with small business owners over the years coaching them to leverage themselves out of their business. But what happens when we first start up, especially if it is our dream to be home based? How do we work “on” our business and “in” it at the same time? To be successful we have to find a way!
Gerber says when we start a business we actually need to be three people in one: The Entrepreneur, The Manager and The Technician and that each of these personalities wants to be boss.
The Entrepreneur is our creative side, the dreamer, the innovator and the catalyst for change. The Manager is pragmatic, planning, creates order and structure. The Technician is the doer, often holding the belief that “if you want it done
right, do it yourself”.
The entrepreneur lives in the future, the manager in the past and the technician in the present. Gerber says we all have each of them inside of us however in almost all cases not in a balanced way.
Which are you; An Entrepreneur, a Manager or a Technician?
It is really important you understand which skill set you dominate in. Don’t assume just because you have gone into business that you are an entrepreneur as Gerber’s research shows that the typical small business owner
is only 10% entrepreneur, 20% manager and 70% technician.
If you have not read The E Myth I suggest you do. I think it is essential reading for anyone embarking on the journey of business.
Once you know who you really are in this model it is about finding ways to get done the things you do not do so well. Unless you are at a point where you can outsource the other tasks or partner with others.
Let me share with you my own example. I am an entrepreneur. I am creative and love planning and ideas. I can and have managed for much of my life but it is not my favorite role. I have also been a technician (accountant, financial planner and others) but again it is not where I want to play. Of course my business would go nowhere if I stayed in creating and dreaming mode – there needs to be some “doing” as well.
I can discipline myself to do the tasks I don’t really like and I do that by having a plan and to some degree pushing myself. However recently I have started using an outsourcing service. If you missed my post on that you can read it here Outsourcing Strategies. In a very short time I have had many of the “to do’s “that have been on my list for way too long handled. It is a great feeling and I have noticed it is freeing me up to be more creative.
I would love to hear what you think of the concept from Gerber’s book. Do you know which type you are; entrepreneur, manager or technician? How do you get the other roles handled? Please share any strategies you may have with us. In my next post on this topic I will share some more tips.
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