“If your business depends on you, you don’t own a business, you have a job. And it’s the worst job in the world because you’re working for a lunatic.”
— Michael Gerber, The E Myth
Andrew Wilkinson, the founder of MetaLab, recently published a fascinating post detailing his leadership style. It is a decently long read – but well worth it. If you’re not up for it – I’ve summarised the core of Lazy Leadership in 11 points below.
- Wilkinson developed his Lazy Leadership system by cobbling together ‘a bunch of ideas from people much smarter than I am’,
- The system is not about sitting around sipping cocktails all day – ‘it’s about taking a step back, leaning on your team, and becoming an observer instead of an active participant in your business.’
- Breaking the ‘delegation barrier’ is many entrepreneurs downfall. Whilst it’s easy to convince yourself that you are the only person who can do it, you entrench yourself as an active participant in the business.
- Build your business as a machine. “Henry Ford didn’t build cars, he built factories”
- CEO’s and leaders need to avoid getting stuck inside their business in marketing, financial or other roles.
- Great leaders build great machines that produce great products.
- Identify what is required to reach a successful result, build the machine to achieve that.
- As a Lazy Leader – focus your time on things you are ‘both good at and that nobody else enjoys’.
- In Wilkinson’s case, he focuses on: reinforcing culture, building processes and tracking results.
- A powerful analogy Wilkinson uses for supporting the need for process is one of a bakery. “If we were a bakery, we were hiring bakers and just saying “make pies” without giving them a recipe. Sure, the bakers were talented, but every pie was different.”
- The key to Lazy Leadership lies in this: Instead of getting stuck making the pies, I’m writing the recipes, and that lets me focus on growing and improving my business instead of trying to maintain it.
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