My morning addiction of coffee and hot chocolate was just cooling off when Paul entered the shop. Paul is a "Brainiac." As a kid he worked every day in his father's soft water franchise. By the time he was 16 he had created a route delivery program for his father's company. By 19, he went into business selling the software to other soft water franchises.
Now Paul is 32 and asking me to help him get to the next level of growth. He wants to expand the software to other companies that make daily deliveries.
Paul has the same problem that many of our woodworking companies face. He has built a successful business around his knowledge, product and personality.
He has hired and fired 4 salespeople because they always fail to bring in the sales. Now he wants me to help him find the right salesperson.
And, I am unable to help for one obvious reason, Paul has proven the "Rule of Three."
My Rule of Three says: "If three people have been hired and fired from one position in quick succession, it is not the people at fault it's the boss."
Anytime you see the Rule of Three in action, you know that the boss is difficult to work with, the position is not well defined, or the objectives are impossible to achieve.
Just like a woodworking shop, if the entire focus is on one person's ability and creativity, then the customers will only be happy if that one person builds their product. Paul has become the product, instead of the software.
If your goal is to grow your business beyond your talents, then focus the attention on the product and service, not on you.
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