If you want to become the boss one day, think like a customer and act like an owner.
How do you think like a customer?
Let’s start with the obvious. Your customers are interested in what’s good for them, not you. They don’t really care how hard you work or how much more complicated your business is from those of your competitors. They don’t care how much you spend on overhead or what regulations you suffer through. The only thing they care about is what you can do for them and how much it will cost them.
To think like a customer, you have to be able to put yourself in his shoes. Here are two questions to ask yourself:
- What do our customers want from us? (Go beyond the obvious.)
- How can we give them more of that? (In other words, in what ways can you reinvent, replicate, reproduce, renovate, refine, and renew the fundamental benefits of your business?)
How do you act like an owner?
What is the difference between the actions of a boss and the actions of an employee? The short answer is this: The boss’s rewards are tied more directly to the future of the business. So that’s what concerns him.
If you want to be the boss one day, focus on what he worries about. What are the problems he deals with on a day-to-day basis? How can you help eliminate them? Show him that you are ready to take the stress out of his life and make him richer by making his business run:
- more smoothly
- more efficiently
- more quickly, and more profitably
As an employee, you have one distinct advantage over your boss: You are closer to your customers and can, therefore, think more like them (if you try). When you come up with ideas on how to provide them with more and better products and services, you will be creating new and supplementary streams of income for the business. Your boss will see you as someone who can make his dreams of having more and worrying less come to fruition.[Ed. Note: Mark Morgan Ford was the creator of Early To Rise. In 2011, Mark retired from ETR and now writes the Palm Beach Letter. His advice, in our opinion, continues to get better and better with every essay, particularly in the controversial ones we have shared today. We encourage you to read everything you can that has been written by Mark.]