Build a Better Business Podcast

75 – Leaders That Dream (Part 1)

3 Key Points in this Episode:

  1. The dream behind the Build a Better Business – Leaders That Dream Mini-Series
  2. The importance of having a dream when you are a leader.
  3. The key elements that are required to create an environment that will make employees care about your dream.

Welcome to episode 75, now that the Blueprint of a Great Business Series has ended, I want to introduce you to the next series, I am calling it Build a Better Business – Leaders That Dream, and it is a three part mini-series.

There are three key things you will learn in part 1 of this mini-series:

  1. The dream behind the Leaders That Dream Mini-Series
  2. The importance of having a dream when you are a leader.
  3. The key elements that are required to create an environment that will make employees care about your dream.

Let’s get started.

To build a better business I believe that leadership is the foundation. I also believe that leaders must pursue big dreams of making a real difference in the lives of the stakeholders in that business and the community it is a part of.

Those stakeholders are the customers the business serves, the employees the business employs, and the suppliers, lenders, and investors the business forms partnerships with.

The community that the business serves is the place the business calls home, this includes the city or county, the province or state, the country, and the continent. Yes, the world itself.

It’s fitting then that I share with you my dream for the Build a Better Business Podcast and this mini-series that is fittingly called Leaders That Dream.

You see, I have a dream where every business is contributing to making the world a better place.

I have a dream where the leaders of those businesses are chasing big audacious dreams of their own. Things like repairing our environment, managing technology in a way that puts people first, taking care of children, protecting the elderly, eliminating diseases, and enhancing the experience of the people who are making the most contribution to the economy – the average working adult. These are but a few of the things the leaders of these better businesses will pursue.

They would also focus on fixing vehicles honestly and correct the first time, building high-quality homes and renovating homes honestly and correct the first time, and showing up on time to perform whatever service they provide for their customers.

They would manufacture products that enhance the life of its users without manipulating them or damaging the environment. They would leverage technology to help the user without exploiting people with addictive components that enslave the user instead of setting them free.

Well, you get the idea.

I want to invite you to join this community of people who are dedicated to the dream of a world filled with better businesses. A world where people come together to create, build and innovate products and services that make things better, not worse.

That is why we conclude every episode with an invitation and a reminder that to accomplish this every leader must dream, every manager must lead, and every employee must care, because I believe that is how you build a better business and that is how we will change the world one business at a time.

Now admittedly this is a monumental task, and although I talk about my dream the fact that you have accepted my invitation and are listening to this podcast means that this really isn’t my dream at all, rather it is your dream, it’s your story, it’s your journey!

You are that leader that must first develop a dream, then convince your managers to become leaders, and finally get your employees to care!

If it is your story and your dream then I am just a guide who will show you how to do it and together we will win the day, we will prevail, and we will make a difference!

The Importance of Having a Dream

Why is it so important to have a dream?

Listen to Michael E. Gerber, author of the E-Myth, the creator of the business coaching industry, the man Inc Magazine called the “the world’s #1 small business guru” as he describes the importance of the dream.

Being a dreamer is one of the fundamental personalities of the successful business leader, the entrepreneur, the titan of industry, the guy or gal who is responsible for the whole enterprise.

Without a dream that is big enough, you can’t inspire others!

Without something meaningful to aim at you can’t move people to enough action to really change anything.

I want you to now listen to Dr. Martin Luther King’s famous speech. Stop the podcast right now and Google it. Listen to it more than once if you want. I have also included a link in the show notes for your convenience.

Listen to Dr. Martin Luther King’s Speech

Okay, you’ve just listened to Dr. Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech.

How do you feel?

Equality among men and women, and a better world for children of all colors.

Isn’t that a beautiful dream?

Don’t you just want to go do something right now to support that goal even though that speech was 55-years ago?

Now you might be thinking that you own a landscaping company or a mechanics shop, or you manufacture widgets for some not very interesting product, or you are a just a solopreneur just starting out, or you are a c-suite executive and you’re afraid of what the board will say, and besides all you sell is software, your not a civil rights activist, your not in the business of changing the world.

That my dear listener is what I call a fatal assumption.

You think therefore you are.

You think you can’t make a difference but that is an assumption that leads to not making a difference and it is an assumption that will be fatal to your business one day.

What if you think you can make a difference and then you do!

What if you believed and you dreamed, and you shared that dream with your customers and they got excited and you told your employees and they got excited and things started to change, one lawn at a time, one car at a time, one widget at a time, one software installation at a time.

What if your customers became better because you inspired them to be better by your example and they did something for someone else, and that starts a ripple effect of good in the world?

What if your employees got fired up and developed something revolutionary and came to you and said, “let’s make the environment better one lawn at a time” or “let’s eliminate pollution one car at a time” or “let’s make our manufacturing processes carbon footprint reverse the carbon effect every time we manufacture our widget” well you get the idea!

I want to caution you about something before we go any further.

Once we start this it is going to change you forever.

Once you embark on this journey you will be on it for the rest of your life.

There are consequences and a cost for being a dreamer and pursuing that dream with everything you’ve got. Not everyone will understand, some people will try to dissuade you because they are scared, or jealous, or flatly don’t want you to succeed.

For this to work, you’ve got to believe, you’ve got to believe in your dream, in yourself, in your customers, employees, and in the process.

You’ve got to believe that the cost is worth it.

You’ve got to believe that by being a leader who dreams you will have managers that lead and employees that care, and that will make you build a better business and that will start to change things very slowly at first, imperceivably at first, but soon it will begin to accelerate and the impact will begin to be felt.

Right now, I want you to say, first in your mind, then in your heart, “I have a dream!” and I want you to keep saying it until you feel it in your body and in your soul. After you listen to this podcast, I want you to keep saying it until you formulate that dream and you can tell others about it and they can feel it too.

The dream is important because it is the vehicle by which you will inspire others to act, it will make customers want to buy, managers will start to really lead, employees will care and the sum of all that action will change everything. That is why it is so important!

The Key Elements

One of the biggest challenges facing most businesses is the issue of hiring and employing “good” people who are engaged in their work and contributing to the business profitably.

Think about this:

Every human has 24-hours a day.

Let’s go through the average work day.

The average human spends 7-hours a day sleeping.

They spend 1-hour getting ready for work and then 1-hour commuting.

That’s 9-hours gone.

They spend 8-hours at work and 1-hour commuting home.

18-hours is gone.

Upon arriving home there is time preparing and eating a meal which takes on average 1-hour.

19-hours is gone.

The final 5-hours are usually split between home and family responsibilities and watching Netflix or being on Social.

That is the average working person’s daily routine.

Then that person spends half their weekend doing household chores and other tasks like grocery shopping and laundry.

For some one-day a week is dedicated to recreation and rest.

That is the mind-numbing daily and weekly routine of the average working person. Those days blend into weeks and months and years.

That is your employees experience and we have the audacity to question why 70% of employees are not engaged in their work.

As leaders of our businesses when we don’t pursue a dream, we are perpetuating this tyrannical monotony that consumes people’s lives. Strips them of their dignity and reduces their very existence to nothing more than a terrible pattern of uninspired redundancy.

Therefore, I believe that “people are suffering in quiet desperation waiting for someone to come along and give them something to believe in and care about.”

The key elements required in every business to make employees care are straightforward. The fact that they are simple concepts is one of the reasons why we discount them. But that is a mistake because keeping things simple is one of the fastest ways to succeed in life and business.

The elements required are:

  1. Have a dream that resonates with your customers and employees.
  2. Empower your managers to become leaders and accept nothing else from them.
  3. Encourage your employees to contribute to the development of the dream and the implementation of new ideas to realize that dream.

That’s it!

Do these three things and people will (metaphorically speaking) break their backs for you to achieve the dream because it will no longer be your dream, it will be their dream!

This concludes part-1 of this mini-series.

On Tuesday in episode 76 , we have a special guest – Dorie Clark. She is the author of three outstanding books and a regular contributor to Harvard Business Review. I can’t wait to share this interview with you.

Next Friday in part-2 we will go through how to go about identifying what your dream should be and what changes you may need to go through to become a leader that dreams.

Have a great weekend and remember if you take any value from this podcast, please share it with one person and give us a 5-star rating and review. This podcast can be found at jamieirvine.ca, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher.


This episode sponsored by:

Trackstar Web Design

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Process Street

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Thank you for listening and I look forward to working with you soon.

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