It has been said that it is the direction you set for yourself and not your intention that will determine where you end up.  I believe this to be true –  both at a personal and at a business level.

The path we set for our business is essential to where our company will be 5, 10 or 20 years from now.  While we cannot fully anticipate the future, defining the path and making critical decisions as to what needs to be done along the path must be done.

Several years ago I was providing some advice to a company that was in the process of revamping its business plan – determined to take their company to the next level.  They had arrived at a point where partly through their own hard work and partly because of outside circumstance and opportunity, they saw an opportunity for their company to expand and achieve significant growth.  I recall a lunch meeting with the founder and his long time partner – both of whom had invested time and money in getting the company to where it was.  At that meeting the founder confirmed the intentions for growth and then he made a very significant statement – “I believe the company would be better served if I handed the president role to someone more skilled at the functions required of that position.” He would continue with the company in a role that was more suited to his skill set and interest.  It was a bold statement and one I knew was appropriate based on my knowledge of the company and the business plan they were in the process of fine tuning.  The founder made the statement understanding that for his company to grow, it would take more than just intention.  It was necessary to take a very specific step – bring into the company expertise that would be required to achieve the growth they all desired and would benefit from.

All too often the scenario is completely different – one where an individual or group of individuals come up with an idea for a business.  They become business founders and owners.  They are the knowledge centre, the energy centre and the major stakeholders.  Sometimes the decision to make changes such as bringing new skill sets into the company is not easily recognized nor executed.  Sometimes the need is something else but whatever it is, it is essential that it be taken to achieve the end result – not always easy decisions but absolutely necessary.