I was recently at a gathering of entrepreneurs and we talked about our challenges, what we like and what we don’t like about what we do. And one thing struck me: no-one in the group actually enjoyed being the boss (me included). And by that I don’t mean that they don’t value the independence. We all do. But we all see managing people as a necessary evil, a means to an end not the end itself.
And when i thought about it it actually makes sense. Entrepreneurs (or at least the true breed of entrepreneurs) are not people who rise up the ranks and become CEOs. They are mavericks, the round pegs in the square holes, people who don’t abide by social norms or fit in large groups be it social groups or corporations. What drives them is an itch to innovate, to create products that serve customers in ways that are either totally novel or just better than what’s out there already.
I’ve not heard one entrepreneur tell me that they started a business because their dream was to be a manager. In fact most exceptional entrepreneurs are terrible managers. They are visionaries who see what others don’t, they are go-getters who take risks and go out to build what they see. But they are not managers. They are too impatient, temperamental, too firey and passionate, and have high standards. Too high for most people to meet, at least consistently. Managing is something that comes with the ride and has to be thrown into the mix.continue reading »