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Owner Involvement in the Business

micro management vs macro management empowermentHow do I kindly suggest to the owner of the business that he is too involved in small decisions, and get him to redirect his focus to larger and more meaningful items that typically an owner/founder would be concentrating on? His involvement in the minutiae means even small decisions take a long time to make, while the business suffers from a lack of vision, communication, motivation, organization, etc. The 77 year-old owner started in the industry on the production line, moved into sales, and then started his own business, which he has run for 40 years. I greatly respect the man and all he has done, but he seems to have no idea of the questions he should be asking or steps he should be taking in order to grow his business. I thought perhaps he was simply comfortable with the status quo and didn't care to do more, but I have realized he just doesn't know how to do anything different from what has always been done. I would like to gently point him in the right direction to get him asking the right questions, looking at the right metrics, etc., but it's hard to know where or how to start!


Title: CFO
Company: C-Suite Services
LinkedIn Profile
(CFO, C-Suite Services) |

YOU produce the right metrics, YOU should highlight the right questions. Just make things happen. Take the initiative.

As Rumsfeld said, we don't know what we don't know...and I think this is the case for the 77 year old owner It is up to you to initiate the changes or propose new practices even if you have to propose changes daily to him.

In time, he will realize that other people are capable of making decisions for the company and everything will be alright even without his involvement.

Topic Expert
Regis Quirin
Title: Director of Finance
Company: Gibney Anthony & Flaherty LLP
LinkedIn Profile
(Director of Finance, Gibney Anthony & Flaherty LLP) |

Just hold a second. I recommend you get an objective opinion, from someone that understands the players. It is not uncommon for an individual to look at the owner or their Manager and say, "Wow, I can do it better. How did this person get to the level that they are at?" Try to understand his motivation. At 77, it may not be profit. You may be 100% correct and given the opportunity you could make a highly profitable company. But that is irrelevant, as you do not own the company. The answer may be its time to for you to move to the next opportunity.


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