In the early stages of your business, everything is on you. You don’t just wear a lot of hats, you wear all of them. You run the business, take calls, answer emails, work on your website and your advertising. You do this all yourself! Maybe you’re even still at this point now with your business.
However, if you keep forging onward and business does well, you won’t be able to keep that up. There will come a time when you’ll need to start forming a management team to start taking over some of the operation.
Identify Your Goals
No matter where you’re at, look at your business. Take an inventory of what (and who) you have in the business already. If you have some employees, identify the strengths and weaknesses your team currently has. Once this is done, decide what your goals are for the company. This will help you to start forming a strategy to help you move forward.
You probably already have some great talent around you, but, see how you can optimize and fill in the gaps. Your management team should be able to handle your company completely (at least for a period of time) without you. You are going to need skilled, trust-worthy people at the helm.
Ask for Outside Advice
Look to people you trust outside your usual circle if possible. You definitely want the outside advice to come from outside your company. Find someone you can rely on to take a look at your operations and your plans and offer advice. Ideally, this would be someone with some level of entrepreneurial experience.
It’s easy to find yourself surrounded by “yes-men”, people who always agree with you. A little bit of external help and perspective can go a long way in helping you crush your goals.
There are a set number of roles that need to be filled if your aim is to be a “full-fledged” company. Each one of these people have a distinct set of responsibilities that ensure smooth operation. Filling out these seats with qualified people means you can take a vacation without worrying about returning to a disaster.
Keep in mind though, only you know your business the best. You might not need every one of these positions filled.
The Chief Executive Officer is the big kahuna, boss of everyone and everything. The CEO sees to building out and hiring in the senior team. They also have the final say in how company resources and money are used.
The main thing a CEO needs to master though, is hiring and firing. If a CEO can build a killer team, their shortcomings can be masked. If the team isn’t stellar, the CEO is left to pick up the slack. A great CEO knows the industry, knows the operations and can make the critical decisions.
Chief Operations Officers handle the details within a business’ operations. A good COO is almost like a corporate logistics master. A COO knows what it takes for a company to consistently deliver every single day.
A person with this title is able to watch how things are going and take action if corrections need to be made. To scale this down, let’s say you run (as the owner or store manager) a brick and mortar store or shop with only one location; in this instance you are basically a Chief Operations Officer.
The Chief Financial Officer takes care of the money, plain and simple. They build out financial strategies and make the budgets. A CFO will also analyze where money is coming in from and monitor your business’ fiscal health.
A CFO is a financial nerd and number cruncher. They can identify paths that are worth pursuing harder and will notice areas that are eating away at profits.
A great Chief Technology Officer is an impassioned nerd who stays current with the trends and knows when it’s appropriate for the company to make upgrades. A CTO is necessary when you’re business is either directly in or heavily reliant on technology.
Tech Officers should have at least an understanding of some different programming languages and the workflows associated with them. If your company needs to use programming or coding in any capacity a knowledgeable CTO will be able to make the best decisions on exactly how you should approach that next project.
The normalization of the Chief Marketing Officer position is a fairly new development. This is because of how important marketing has become recently. Marketing has always been a critical area for businesses. But only recently has it become one of the primary battles.
The marketing world is always changing and a high-quality CMO is always keeping up with it. An excellent CMO would be able to come in, take inventory and begin devising the perfect marketing strategy for your company. What’s even better, they’ll be on top of what the most current and relevant channels to pursue for your company will be.
If marketing has been the biggest mountain your business has to climb, you might want to consider finding one of these experts.
It’s worth repeating, you know your business the best. If you feel you don’t need a CxO, that’s great. Look to those around you, you might have some great potential close-by already.
I hope this quick run-down has helped you begin your journey of building an awesome management team. A great support team can easily mean the difference between amazing success and horrible failure. You can also see what it takes to become part of our team!