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8 tips for balancing the entrepreneur’s life

| by Jeff Abbott

The challenge of work-life balance is one of perspective and mindset. In order to change the way we work, we must change the way we think. 

To achieve balance we must think like a leader, not like a doer. We also need to keep our eye on our purpose… our “Why.”

Entrepreneurs tend to be very good at what they do. Therein is the problem. Leading and succeeding through others is a new skill. They like to stick with a winning behavior so they often fall back on doing. 

Before learning how to win as a leader, there are often hard lessons and failures. Those experiences tempt the leader to revert to working in the business where things turn out better in their mind. 

Instead of trusting others who can't perform as well and might let them down, they fall back into doing it themselves and rationalize that it's the only way to win. “I have no one to delegate to,” they tell themselves and are destined to repeat the wrong choices. 

Other contributing factors may be a poor business model with low margins and insufficient working capital and manpower. Perhaps poor family relationships also make it convenient to excuse long work days because of the stresses awaiting them at home, so they avoid it. Some have no sense of mission or purpose. 

Someone said that being “busy” is the badge of honor among entrepreneurs.To not appear busy is to not be honorable. Regardless of root causes, there is no easy way out.

Here are eight steps toward changing your personal work culture. 

  1. Build a team of competent players.
  2. Communicate the mission and visionandoffer a clear purpose.
  3. Assign appropriate roles and responsibilities.
  4. Get the team all working in unity, aligned in the same direction.
  5. Train the players.
  6. Trust the players. Give them a challenge and freedom to perform and succeed.
  7. Support the team and provide resources to win.
  8. Begin the process of investing in the team and working onthe business.

Once this work is done and the load is appropriately spread among the team, the leader can leave the business in capable hands. Work-life balance can finally emerge. 

Photo source: istock 

Jeff Abbott

Jeff Abbott was President of Aerochem, a $30 million aerospace chemical milling company in Southern California and was also General Manager of the consolidated divisions of Ducommun AeroStructures, a $105 million entity. He is now the Managing Partner of The Barnabas Group Inland Empire. He and his wife of 44 years are long time members of Chino Valley Community Church in Chino Hills, California. He has two grown sons and enjoys being involved in the lives of his grandchildren in Southern California.

This article was first published on Used with permission. 

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