Last Updated on April 11, 2023 by Dave Schoenbeck
Have you ever gotten off the highway only to find that normal speed limits are too slow? Experts call this “becoming velocitized.” I see this frequently in business leaders -the hard-charging, over-achieving executive adapts their lifestyle to a high-speed hybrid blend of business and family life.
They have evolved from an average pace to a super-human rhythm that appears to work for them but leaves their colleagues, employees, and family blown into the roadside ditch from her considerable momentum. Unfortunately, business leaders rarely notice the effects of this entrepreneurial behavior until it’s too late.
As a culture, we admire energetic, high-impact, larger-than-life leaders. We respect and admire the leaders that are more than we can be. But we also secretly wait for the fiery accident like a NASCAR fan, a burnout we all know is coming. Unfortunately, most of us fall victim to this one entrepreneurial behavior at some point in our careers.
Problematic Qualities of an Entrepreneur
Moving too fast is one of those entrepreneurial tendencies that develops over time and becomes an addiction. While you convince yourself that high-speed action is good for productivity, your team is likely struggling to catch up. This seemingly harmless entrepreneurial behavior ends up costing you in the end.
When you’re constantly asking, “What’s next?” you fail to pay close attention to what’s at present. This results in ineffective listening, careless mistakes, and a lack of understanding regarding your organization’s obstacles.
Furthermore, being “too busy” creates a barrier between yourself and your employees. They yearn for a chance to seek your counsel and advice. They hope to understand better what they are supposed to do to fulfill your plan for a few moments. If you don’t have time for them, they won’t be motivated to do their best work for you.
There are also the inevitable personal struggles of moving at a fast pace. Work stress bleeds into your personal life, causing health issues and affecting your relationships with family and friends; however, if you let it, one simple entrepreneurial behavior can unravel your entire life.
How to Slow Down
Once you’ve set the pace for yourself, it’s hard to slow back down. So the first step is to look hard at your daily schedule. Are you managing your time as efficiently as you could be? Are you still checking your emails after work? How much time do you set aside for your relationships or hobbies? If the answer to that last one is “zero,” you have some re-scheduling.
Unlearning entrepreneurial behavior takes time. Sometimes you need an outside perspective to help bring you back to the center. For example, a business coach can look at your interactions with the organization and pinpoint critical areas for you to scale back.
I propose forcing yourself to take some excruciatingly slow laps around the track. Be more present in the day-to-day tasks and give each interaction your full attention. You will find balance, but your team will catch up to you. Ultimately, your success is measured by how effectively your team executes the company’s goals, not how fast you go.
Worried you’re moving too fast and not sure how to slow down? Fill out my “Get Started” form to schedule a complimentary discussion so we can address your potentially problematic entrepreneurial behavior. There are no “strings attached.”