Why a small business owner needs a time machine.

October 22, 2012

While psychologists tell us that the best thing we can do for our mental health is to operate in the here and now, not regretting past mistakes or worrying about what’s to come in the future, I think that the present is the worst place for a small business owner to be operating in.  I truly believe that a business owner should be either reviewing the past or planning the future, and not be stuck in the present, trying to solve the many problems that crop up through the business day!

To do this, I suggest that a small business owner think about business life as working in a ” time machine” that will allow him or her to get free from the problems of the present, learn from the past, and plan for the future.

In my experience, we all wish we could go back to a time when everything that happened in a business day was something we could handle, something we had had prior experience in dealing with, and therefore something we felt comfortable in.  This “comfort zone” mentality is a hard thing for anyone to shake off, because we all feel better and more competent when we’re in that zone, doing what we know how to do best.  To be a good business leader, though, we all have to stretch beyond what we know how to do and tackle the problems that have not yet been solved.  The problems of the present are best handled by the people we have hired to handle them, and not kicked upstairs to us to do it for them.

So come along with me on this “time machine” ride, and we’ll discuss some of the ways that all of us in business can fight the tendency to fall back to what we know, and instead tackle the challenges of the future.  Let’s start by making the present the last time zone we want to be operating in.