Emerging Leaders 2017

Simplicity on the other side of complexity

November 25, 2017 by Rob

In May I was accepted into the SBA’s Emerging Leaders class for 2017 which was an amazing opportunity leading to month after month of new realizations, inspiration, and wonderful connections with other professionals in the community. It was an opportunity for personal development, but also a chance for me to work ‘on’ our business instead of ‘in’ our business. It felt a little indulgent to spend so much time focusing inward, but if I built some systems and efficiencies where we would be better able to serve our clients then it seemed worthwhile.

Even though I thought I was doing a good job of tracking success I soon realized there were a lot of things I was missing. In Emerging Leaders we tackled a number of topics from finance to marketing, there was great instruction, the collaboration with other participants was powerful, and it really primed me for that quest for knowledge. I’ve done a lot of reading on my own, but Megan and I have also found a mentor in Wil Buchanan of Philantech3, who in 60 seconds elegantly makes the case for getting the right data.

A problem we faced in the second half of the year was I over-corrected. I began collecting too much data and launching too many systems. Most of what I was tracking ended up being inconsequential, and don’t ask Mike how many times he had to move our data from one CRM to another unless you are ready to buy him a beer.

After months of going crazy, we finally got things settled into a rhythm. We actually abandoned the CRM’s and started using a Scrum Board in the office.

scrum board

We use some simpler tools to track our Scorecard and internal to-dos like Google Drive and Trello. It’s exciting to have the tools to manage the growth our business has experienced. After many months of working ‘on’ the business and feeling good with where we’re at I remembered a quote I heard a number of years ago about Simplicity.

“I would not give a fig for the simplicity this side of complexity, but I would give my life for the simplicity on the other side of complexity.” ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.

I feel like we’ve found that simplicity, and I’m excited for what that means for the future; getting to spend more time working on the things that matter. And as much as I love the systems and checklists the most important change has been through that process we’ve developed a clear vision for where we are going. We know what we want to do (create, authentic, non-fiction media) and who we want to work for (people that have a story to tell because they are adding value to their client’s/community).

Rogue Heart works with a lot of larger organizations, but we do have a contingent of entrepreneurs we server. Why vision casting takes a lot of work I think most organizations have some checks and balances to make sure there is a clear vision, but I worry about the entrepreneur. I strongly encourage you to take the time to step back from the day-to-day grind and make sure you can see the big picture. If you have any questions about resources for working ‘on’ your business feel free to reach out to me directly. rob@rogueheartmedia.com |


Written By Rob

Rob has 16 years of experience in information technology, from traditional programming and leading a department at a prominent international software company to more nontraditional roles integrating technology into new industries. He is also a Marketing Practitioner and is committed to the Rogue Heart mission of creating Media that Matters; helping clients establish relevant KPI (Key Performance Indicators) and measuring the impact and success of campaigns.

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