What I Do:
I’m president and co-founder of Alkali Benefits and Insurance Services in Plano, Texas. Alkali is an independent insurance agency that helps employers with employee benefits as well as individuals and families with their health, auto and home insurance needs.
My Biggest Decision as a Leader:
Giving up “rugged individualism.” I had to let go of the thought that the only way our company could go further was for me to make all of the decisions and work harder and longer.
A Characteristic Every Leader Should Possess
I believe that every leader should have the ability to acknowledge their weaknesses and be human. If we can’t accept that we make mistakes, then we aren’t connected to reality and miss out on the opportunity to grow.
The Secret of Great Delegation:
Clear communication of expectations is key. They include the desired outcome, the time frame and how much input I want to have along the way. There are some things I delegate that I just want to go away, while there are others I delegate that I want to be able to provide feedback on throughout the process. Delegating both tasks the same way would be a huge mistake. If I am clear on my expectations, we are both likely to feel satisfied with the results.
My Biggest Obstacle to Delegation
Sometimes it’s tough to recognize early enough something should be delegated. Too often, I hold on to things thinking, I won’t bother so-and-so. I’ll take care of it myself. And then I run out of time and still end up asking them for their help at the last minute, which puts more strain on them than if I would have just delegated the task in the first place. I am acknowledging my shortcoming so I can create a new opportunity for growth in this area.
I am truly inspired when I see the light go on and someone actually takes responsibility for the results they create in their own lives. Whether it is someone realizing that their money problems are caused by the person they’re seeing in the mirror or it is someone who realizes that their employer doesn’t “owe” them a job and begins to create a new story, there is nothing better.
My Best Leadership Advice:
You must learn to get comfortable being uncomfortable. Tough decisions and tough discussions are all part of being a great leader.
My Biggest Obstacles:
Identifying the good team members from the great! I am so passionate about what we do as an organization, I sometimes have a hard time distinguishing their energy from my own.
My Favorite Movie:
Rudy! It’s the story of Rudy Ruettiger, an unlikely hero who overcame all odds to do the seemingly impossible and play football for Notre Dame. He had a true champion’s heart!
The Secret of My Success:
I have been blessed with a vision and purpose for a much bigger and better future for everyone around me, but I realize it begins with me.
Share your tips on delegation.