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3 things to go farther, faster

Fuel your 2017 success

by Ryan Giles//

Are you a leader in your business? If you’re like most business leaders, you’ve reached your position because you were very good at making the doughnuts (performing the actual “work” of the business). For example, most great legal firms are run by great lawyers. Most of the best accounting practices are run by excellent CPAs. Most great marketing agencies are run by great marketers. This is good since the passion needed to excel in your field is necessary when starting a business in that field. However, passion alone doesn’t guarantee success. You also need business skills.

Fourteen years ago, I started a technology service company. My partners and I were the best technical minds in the area, but our lack of business skills hampered our early growth. Starting and running six businesses over the past two decades has taught me that three things can help your business go farther, faster: a business coach, an operating system and a peer group.


Your business needs a coach for the same reason a professional sports team needs a coach. Some of these reasons are: instruction/guidance/experience; accountability; sounding board for ideas; an outsider’s perspective; and help you grow by getting you outside your comfort zone.


Like a computer, your business runs on an operating system. This system is the method you or your management team uses to run the day-to-day operations. If you’re like most businesses, this “system” isn’t well documented or even well thought out. Worse, your staff members may not even be aware of how or why the system works. Some benefits of a good operating system: intentional, predictable growth; communication rhythm to keep your company on the same page; processes to solve problems and develop your people; scorecard to measure your team’s progress; vision, values, focus, health and traction. For more information on the best operating system I’ve found, visit


A peer group can be local, regional or national, and is usually, but not always comprised of similar businesses in the same industry. I’ve successfully been a part of peer groups with focuses on CEO/leadership skills, marketing, sales, and finance. Here are a few of the many benefits a peer group can offer: group purchasing discounts; industry best-practices and financial benchmarking; accountability; and networking.

//Reach Giles at

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