Top 3 Leadership Fails Online Business Managers Are Making

by Tiffany Johnson on March 9, 2016

For the most part we are purposeful to write super uplifting and focus on the positive type of articles for the community. We do this because ultimately it is a core value of ours that we desire to reach for what we want rather than run from what we don’t want. Most of the time I do see this as the goal in our communication as well.

That being said though… there are a couple of mindsets I have noticed as a recurring theme with our OBM community and I want to just tackle them straight on (you know me, that’s kinda how I role :)

Leadership Fail #1 – Not believing in yourself and the value of what you bring to the business!

By far our OBM community is one of the ‘smartest’ groups of people hanging out online. We are strategy, tech, customer service, problem solvers, innovators, activators, therapist (for our clients often), marketers, analysis, business developers, and the list could go on and on… OBM’s are the backbone and the cornerstone of many of the businesses they serve. YET we will allow our lack of belief in ourselves to create these experiences:

  • often we allow clients to under value our contribution both in payment and respect (granted this can happen also because the client simply doesn’t know how to do it differently)
  • we do not take ownership of a project to see it to the desired result because we are insecure in our ability to produce… even though we have proven time and time again what we are capable of it.
  • we do not pursue bigger, high-end, high-performing clients. If you want to know how much you believe in yourself look at your clients… do you work with clients who play small… if so it might be that you are comfortable yourself with playing small… which likely stems from your personal believe system about yourself.

Others will only believe about you, what you believe about yourself!!

Sure you can put on a good front and ‘pretend’ for a bit and folks will see more in you. However, they will eventually see you exactly like you see yourself. Occasionally¬†a true mentor will come into your life who sees your potential and will call it out of you, but if you don’t step in to it, they too will eventually only see you as you see yourself. How you view yourself will be the only true portrait others see in you.

SO PLEASE decide today to TRULY start BELIEVING IN YOU!

Leadership Fail #2 – Following rather than leading.

To be honest if you haven’t settled #1 yet… it will be very difficult to overcome #2! But the truth is I talk with many OBM’s in our community who are simply running… running after the client, running after the business, running after team members, running after the fires, running after the chaos… running! Guess what is happening when you are running after all of those things. You are following them, they are not following you!


So stop the crazy! Stop trying to chase the result and start leading yourself, the business, your client and the team to the desired outcome they are entrusting you with. We cover this in-depth in our Online Business Manager Certification Training so if you have not checked this out I encourage you to… but in the meantime here are 3 simple steps to take to regain control of your leadership:

1. Make a plan (I bet you saw that coming) – with realistic expectations and timelines. This is the map to success for any element in the business that you have currently been chasing, every time!
2. Effectively communicate the plan – get everyone on board with how things are going to work moving forward. If they are not on board find new people. If that means finding new clients who are willing to let you lead, so be it, if that means letting go of team members who do not want to be a part of the solution, let them go.
3. Protect the plan – Which means hold fast the route you are on and empower everyone else to do the same. I promise it might be a little like herding cats at first, but eventually everyone will understand the culture of the team is that of solid planning and executing that plan. They will learn to love you for it!!

Leadership Fail #3 – Not building a bridge between you and the client

Let me explain. I believe most of us would agree that our high-end, high-performing clients simply think differently than we do. They are always thinking grow, move, go forward, future, make more, do more, build more. We are often thinking, slow down, catch up, finish what we started, test it, prove it, perfect it… lol So you can see where these two mindsets can be a bit differing when we ultimately have to be working toward the same goal. So what are we to do to work together successfully.

We have to look at how we build a bridge. Many OBM’s are trying to walk on water rather than building a bridge… The approach is, well if I run after them fast enough I will be able to catch up and stay caught up. But the reality is you will not. What you will do and what many of us do (and I am included in this) is we hit burn out, we feel like a failure, we never feel like we are producing at the level we could be and it’s discouraging. The reality is, this is no way to live your life or effectively run your business. So a bridge must be built.

This bridge is based on these 3 points of success:

1. Vision
2. Priorities
3. Results

If you can clearly define on both sides these 3 things with every initiative you are working on you will build a solid bridge between you and your client.

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