Systemizing a Prophet
Like many in-laws, the Sheik just couldn’t help putting in his two cents about what he had observed, and said to Moses, “What is this thing you are doing with People Inc.? Why are you sitting alone, trying to do everything yourself, from sun up to sun down?”
Moses’ excuse was that the people needed him; after all, he was overseer of the Operations Manual, and had ALL the wise answers in his head. So, when the people had difficulties, they had to come to him.
Does this sound like the excuse many small business owners/managers use to justify working 12 to 14 hours a day, even as they never seem to get everything done?
The old Sheik’s response to his son-in-law’s excuse was, “The thing that you do is NOT good! Both you and all these people with you will surely wear yourselves out. This thing is too much for you; you will NOT be able to sustain this operation doing it this way.”
Wow, that’s a pretty gutsy thing to say to a great prophet and leader who has guided a great company, People Inc., through years of overcoming obstacles—even profiting in many ways—albeit through blood, sweat and tears.
Moses realized that what his father-in-law said was TRUE; he was burning himself—and the people—out because he lacked organizational and managerial skills.
However, the thing that enabled Moses to be a GREAT leader was his willingness to learn, continually improve and to humble himself and listen to those with more experience and expertise in an area. He accepted good counsel, even from his father-in-law.
What did Moses’ father-in-law tell him to do to improve and change the way he was doing things?
He said, “Moses, listen NOW to my voice, my advice. Teach and train these people on the Operations Manual, so they can work without your constant supervision. ALSO, choose from the people responsible men (managers) with integrity, who won’t be jealous of one another or engage in office politics. Choose those who have the ability to oversee thousands (i.e. a large division), then hundreds (i.e. a large department), and those who can manage smaller groups, etc.”
Philip Beyer, founder/president of Ebiz Products LLC and founder of Beyer Printing Inc. in Nashville Tenn., is a chronic entrepreneur, business systems analyst and consultant. Author of "System Busters: How to Stop Them in Your Business" and recipient of an InterTech Technology Award for the design and development of System100 business process management software. Beyer speaks to business owners across the country on how to bring lean, sustainable order to their businesses. Contact him at (615) 425-2652.