Wealth entrepreneurs and CEOs of emerging technology businesses must have a sense of urgency and instill that sense in partners and employees. They must understand the fundamental concept that time is the enemy when it comes to building a business of significant value. Opportunity is nothing more than a window that time ultimately closes, which means there is a finite amount of time in which to capitalize on an opportunity before factors outside of the entrepreneur’s control will close the window.
This is the imperative for a sense of urgency. It is not enough for the entrepreneur to have a sense of urgency. It has to be made part of the company culture. The urgency has to be felt by every partner, director, manager and employee. Sometimes the business model, operating procedures or incentive plans have to be changed in order to reinforce the sense of urgency. Sometimes personnel changes have to be made because some people cannot accommodate urgency in their lives. But urgency has to be an overriding imperative.
It is essential that entrepreneurs and CEOs embrace the importance of having a sense of urgency and ensure that everyone in the company shares that feeling. Entrepreneurs and CEOs should answer these questions:
- Do I have long term goals and a timeline for achieving those goals?
- Do I establish milestones that will tell me if I am falling behind?
- Do my partners, board, managers and employees understand that achieving these milestones is a matter of collective urgency?
- Do I get up each day with a clear understanding of what must be accomplished that day in order to move the company forward?
- Do I set deadlines for my staff and do I enforce those deadlines?
- Do I deal quickly and effectively with problem employees who impede progress towards my goals?
- Do I have internal processes that promote efficiency, repetitiveness and progress towards my goals and objectives?
- Do I have in my company a culture of urgency?
The answers to each of these questions should be yes. If a significant proportion of the answers are in the negative the company may lack the collective sense of urgency needed to realize its full potential.