Can a Small Business Owner be TOO Much of a Leader?

Many small business owners treat their business like their own child, and they definitely should. New small businesses need caring, nurturing, constant supervision, and could potentially cause an all-nighter. As the business continues to grow and employees are hired, the small business owner solidifies his or her role as leader of the business. As time goes on, it is important for the small business owner to become a trustworthy leader and relinquish some control over the business to its employees. But, some small business owners never reach that level of trust, and hinder their leadership abilities. Here are a few scenarios where small business owners are lacking in leadership.

You Have Anxiety About Giving Others Control
Occasionally, small business owners turn into control freaks: watching over employees shoulders, refusing to leave work before anyone else, meddling in others' work, and just being overbearing. Giving up the reigns is a difficult task, especially when you're the boss. Unfortunately, you can't do everything. Repeat - you cannot do everything! Your business will only be successful if you learn to trust others and create a system with your employees to delegate work fairly and appropriately. When employees feel trusted, they feel empowered and important. Employees are more likely to feel encouraged to work hard when they know their boss trusts them with work and gives them their baby to hold.

Your Business Does Not Have an Employee Manual
The first step to relinquishing control is to create an employee manual. Creating a manual will outline what you need your employees to do to conduct business in a productive and efficient manner. Additionally, as the author of the manual, small business owners can instruct employees on what to do based on how they want their business to be run. For example, the manual could include different closing procedures when the business closes shop in case the owner has to leave early.

You Delegate a Majority of the Work...to Yourself
Yes, your business is like your baby. Yes, you want to make sure that everything is done. If you do not delegate the work to your employees, you will lose productivity, money, and respect from your employees. Trust your employees that you hire and provide them with the manual. If trained properly, your employees can do the work exactly how you would. This way, you are trusting the employees with your business, and allowing them to actually do their job.

You Haven't Taken a Vacation Since Opening Your Business
Owning a small business is very stressful. Keeping track of finances, profits, your employees, and basically everything, falls on the shoulders of the owner. If business owners plan ahead and trust their employees, taking a vacation should not be a problem. Spending time away from the business and with your family is not only important for keeping your personal life in check, but also to give your business room to function without you.

The Solution

Too much of a leader? The solution is simple: back down and let go. Small business owners who put too much on their plate and choose not to back down will find themselves overworked, miserable, stressed, and fit the bill to be labeled a control freak. To start, you must realize that the business will never take off without delegating the work. Being a leader involves being in charge of your employees and their work. Take control of your business by releasing control. Next, avoid the urge to micromanage. It might be hard at first, but using an employee manual will give your employees direction and guidance.

A leader is someone that many people look up to, respect, and look to for guidance as a role model. A small business owner must be a leader for its employees. Being too much of a leader and too obsessive is a problem many business owners face. Realize the problem, and relinquish control to gain control of your business.