Sink Handle Podcast Ep 15

Episode # 15 - Visionary Not Jerk

Being a Visionary, is all about big ideas and strategy, seeing the big picture.  But lately I have that title used as an excuse for bad behavior.  You can be a big thinker without being a jerk to the people around you.

The word “visionary” is definitely on trend right now and while most would probably talk about how to become one, today I am going to talk about how to not be a jerk masquerading as a “visionary”.  We’re going to discuss prime examples of what I’m seeing being described as visionary behavior in business, when realistically, it’s unacceptable behavior!  You may say visionary.  I say jerk.  Let’s explore the distinction.  

Topics Covered:

  • The difference between a true visionary and a visionary jerk

  • The number one thing I see in most visionary jerks

  • What being a real visionary looks like

Hello, everyone, and welcome to Episode 15. Today I want to talk about something I've seen as a trend lately, an unhappy trend as far as I'm concerned, there seems to be in the lexicon, sometimes a word that comes out and everyone starts using it. And then it gets old. But some of those words have a real meaning they are a real thing, but then they kind of get used in a way that tarnishes them a little bit, I think. And I haven't seen the word "visionary" used a ton lately. Now that can be because of the popularity of books like Traction, which uses that whole "visionary/integrator" concept. And it is a real concept. What a visionary is, is that person who has these big ideas and wants to leave the strategy and kind of be that big picture person. And they usually work with an integrator, which is very similar to an OBM or a DOO that would come in and then help them deal with the details of those big visions and strategy. And that is a working business model. Lots of people use that. So I'm not here to debate that. What I am here to talk about is the visionary not being a jerk. I am seeing so many people using the word Well, he's a visionary, as an excuse for really jerky behavior. And here at the Sink Handle podcast, we talk a lot about our our team working well together and how can we make this best for everyone and how do we get the best, most efficient business right? This definitely goes against all of that thinking when you are being this "visionary", that is just a real big jerk and isn't working with the business isn't taking care of his team. That's, that's not good business. So today I want to talk a little bit about this. Because in all of my groups and Facebook and things like that, I'm seeing a lot of people use this as an excuse. Oh, well, they emailed me at midnight, and they expected all the work to be done at 6am because they had somewhere to be. Oh, but he's a visionary. Of course, that's how he works. No, that's just a jerk. That is a jerk who is valuing your time. So I want to be clear that there is a distinction. You can be a big picture thinker. You can also be on time and be prepared. Just because you're late to every meeting. That's not because you're a big picture thinker. That's because you don't respect other people's time. Let's not be like that. I mean, I trust that my dear listeners out there are not like this at all. I know that you are working really hard to make a great business. But I think sometimes we don't know the boundaries. So I figured I figured I would talk about it a little bit because I'm seeing a lot of this with virtual assistants and OBMs, and DOOs, and I hear them saying things like this, there is the idea that we have a plan for something, we've made a huge plan. There's project management involved kind of size, we're doing a launch something like that. And then we've decided we're going to do these five things. And then two days before, the launch is about to start, that person, the big idea of visionary thinking person comes in and says, Let's change everything. And we'll launch takes months to plan. There are emails to write, there are emails to set up, there are things to go and links to do and carts and things. Tons and tons of work. So for someone to come in and say, let's just change everything, because I felt like it. Or I had another big idea. It's just bad business. If you come in and say, Oh my god, there's a huge problem. In the market we have to fix something. Fine. That makes sense. That is a decision because what a decision with metrics behind it, right? It's a good decision. Okay. The market change, like the world's chaotic right now. Right? Everything changed. We got to fix this. There is a difference between like making good to business decision that we have to rush to get this done. And oh, you know what, I thought of this today, let's change everything. One, it's just bad sense, because it's chaos and chaos cost money. So now you've just paid off your team, all this money to do this big launch. And now you have to pay again for nothing. coming in and saying we're gonna do everything also creates a lot of chaos, and a lot of like, animosity. your team's gonna be like, "Are you kidding me? I just did all this really great work, and now you're just gonna change it for no reason?" And I hear this a lot. And a lot of times it's Oh, well, they're a "visionary". And I hate that. And yes, that there is the part where the person on the OBM, DOO (virtual assistant, not as much) but the leader or the manager of this should be pushing back and saying, those are great ideas we should do for version two. But this launch is this launch. And we cannot change everything today. So we either stop the launch (which no one will ever do) or we just take all those wonderful ideas and try them again next time. Let's see how this works out. Now, that makes better sense, right? It's not going to cost a fortune. There's in chaos, your whole team won't hate you. That's also why being prepared is really important. If you are the big picture visionary, that means you're the leader, which means that you are the one who's supposed to have the strategy right and everyone else is supposed to be coming in to help you implement that. The integrator, the director of operations, those are the people are supposed to come in and help you with this vision you have. But it doesn't mean you just shout out random weird things like I want a unicorn today and then have everyone scurrying around trying to find a unicorn. So the visionary needs to make the decisions and the strategy and lead the team. And I think that's the part. A lot of times it's missing. There's a lot of like, I'm going to just have a random brain dump. I'm going to tell you all of my wonderful ideas, I'm going to expect you to implement them and then I'm going to take the credit. No, no, it is leading, make decisions and leading the visionary to come in with a plan. Maybe you have a detailed plan. Maybe they don't need to know how many emails are sent out, maybe that's the marketing department. But if that leader is not leading, the rest of the team can't do their job. No matter how good they are. There needs to be a plan and that everyone can work in that plan. And it's not the job. I saw the other day someone hiring a virtual assistant, they wanted strategy in there. That's not their job. The job for strategy is the leader. And most of the time that's going to be the visionary, the CEO, that whatever you want call that person. So they're going to have the strategy. They're going to make the decisions and then they're going to stick to those decisions. Unless there's a good reason to not like the market has changed or like a software doesn't work anymore or something like that, then that is that's a gametime decision I understand. But expecting your team to just take a whim of an idea and then make it into something. That's not their job. A lot of times I think that visionaries get into a jam, one because they have ideas that they just get to spout out in like a movie where they just start yelling things and there's some harried assistant that's running behind writing things down. That doesn't work in real life, for the most part, especially unless you're up like a billionaire Tony Stark or something. You know what I mean? And mostly because Tony Stark had Pepper Pots and she was awesome and ran everything, but that's another story. So there is a saying... something to the effect of a lack of prep on your part doesn't create a crisis on mine. And I might have even got that one, right. That means that just because you didn't do your job, doesn't mean I have to stop everything to fix it now, because I did my job. And everybody in this, this business organization has their role, right? If the leader doesn't make a decision or changes decisions, or doesn't make a plan, they're not doing their job. That means also, you're probably not getting the stuff you need to be prepped on. So if your job is also as the leader to come up with the copy, let's say because all the marketing is your gig, or at least the the story, part of the marketing is your gig. And you're supposed to have copy done for five emails. And you can't get your work done. That flows down as well. So I feel like a lot of the times the visionary's excuse is being used for when they're not prepared. The person that's just trying to run things is the operations person is responsible for getting so many emails out or getting the newsletter out or getting the launch sequence done. They need copy for the website, all that kind of stuff. And that's their job. The visionary is supposed to then come in and write all the copy for this, except they don't get their copy in until Thursday night... at six o'clock, everything has to be posted on Friday morning. So the OBM or the DOO will probably just get it done that night, right? They'll work all night to get it down because they want to get their job done. They don't want to be late. But why wasn't your stuff in because you're a "visionary" and you can't stick to schedules? No, just rude. A lot of these examples are not respecting other people's time. And I think that that is a biggest part of this thing that I'm seeing of visionary jerks. They don't respect other people's time because they think they're the only ones who have time. I saw it a ton back in corporate their time, but like, I would be asked to wait on the phone when I was an assistant back in the day, I would be asked to wait on the phone forever, and then hand the phone over. Because my time obviously was less important. Now, it probably was better business sense, but the attitude of it all. Well, I'm very, very important. Very important, and I cannot possibly waste my time on a phone call. Those kind of things. It's not a delegation, it's a I'm too good for this. And that kind of translates over and then all of a sudden, the works not getting done on time. Everyone else is expected to scramble because you're unprepared. They all feel crappy. They don't want to work like that. I've spoken to people who have kids or talk with our kids better than they have to stay up all night. Updating emails, because some disastrous thing was changed at the last second. But they want to do a good job and they want to make sure it's done. So they're working at midnight. That's not fair. And all because someone was unprepared or thought their time didn't matter. Ideas are important. But the execution is what makes them successful. And for anyone who's ever had like those, as seen on TV, like the infomercials, and you're like, Oh my god, I totally thought of that. I thought of the thing where you rip off the nose thing and it sucks all the stuff out of your pores or the cleaning thing or the whatever it is. But you have your thought was in your your head. You never got it out. So it doesn't count. That's why you're not rich now. It's not like you can walk and go, Oh, no, I totally thought of this. I just didn't do anything about it. So I need to have part of that money. No, it's not the way it works, right? So having the ideas and just spouting them out is not enough. You need to make the decisions. You have to have the strategy and you have to be accountable to those things. You have to be accountable to that plan. And that strategy, if you say, we're going to do this launch, then you have to stick to it. And you have to show up and give your team what they need to do their jobs well as well. Because people shouldn't be treated like garbage. Their time is really important. And just like Jenny Davis said, the people that work with us, those of us from virtual systems are gold. They are the people who get the things done. And then the reason everything works, so treating them like hell, and like they're beneath you. It always bugged me. I was sure I was around a lot of very rich people. And there were some people that you could walk into their offices, they would take the time say hello, they always knew my name. They would always ask me if I needed a drink or whatever if I had to go to their office for anything. And then there were other people who barely even acknowledged I was a person. And the nicer ones are usually the richer ones, which always makes always made me laugh. So Just because you have money or you're a big deal does not mean that you can't treat your people well. If you do, you will get the best out of them. And your business will run better. Scrambling around is a waste of time and money for everyone making decisions and then changing them all the time, wasted time and money for everyone. And the chaos all of that creates is just bad juju, you know, like, it's just bad to have on the team, everyone starts resenting you like, Oh, well, we got this email will probably change at the last minute. So let's not do our work. And they're not they're gonna wait for you to change that decision again, and mess everything up. This is going to be a theme here. But we as business owners need to be the leader. We need to decide something. And sometimes that's scary, right? You have to lead through being scared. And that sucks. But you got to do it. That's that's the whole gig of a business owner. We got to make some decisions, try to make good ones, and then treat our people well. Otherwise this is going to be a bigness. All right, go out there, make some decisions and be accountable to yourself and your team treat, your people, well, they deserve it and they will give you the best that way. Alright everyone, I'll see you next week.