INSTANT MBA: Spot Potential Problems Before They Become Disasters

Don Rainey

Photo: Youtube/JMUCOBCFE

Today’s advice comes from Don Rainey’s column at Inc.:“Despite all the cultural emphasis on ‘making it to the top,’ fewer than 1 per cent of employees actually manage to attain an executive level position. For entrepreneurs, of course, the situation is dramatically different: By virtue of being the founder of a company, many become instant CEOs — well before they gain the experience needed to succeed.”

One of the most important traits to becoming a successful CEO, says Rainey — General Partner with Grotech Ventures, a private equity investment firm — is to become an effective “issue spotter.” Often taught to law students, issue spotting is an exercise that focuses on pulling out the critical issues in a conflict.

Once an issue is identified, the most effective CEOs then work quickly to squash the potential problem before it has time to grow into a crisis.

“Framing these root causes in a way that enables others to appreciate them, then determining the best way to resolve them, are also requisite skills for leaders. Usually, you can’t fix things yourself.”

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