Do You Know Your Company’s Confidence/Caution Ratio?
In his book, Navigating the Growth Curve, James Fischer introduces a unique phenomena called The Builder/Protector Ratio (B/P Ratio). This critical ratio is a blend of confidence and caution that every CEO must understood to be successful.
CEOs must also understood it is their responsibility to provide the balance of this ratio in order to move their companies forward as they grow.
Critical Measurement Tool
The B/P Ratio is a measurement within a company of confidence vs. caution and a critical measurement tool for CEOs and their leadership team that assesses the company’s ability to accept change, react with confidence to that change and help the company achieve its stated goals.
A Builder mindset creates new ideas, takes on new initiatives, and finds ways to expand the revenue and profitability of the enterprise. A Builder chooses to challenge and improve the way things are done. They are risk tolerant and highly supportive of growth. A Builder tends to be confident in the financial strength of a company and hold a high degree of confidence in the company’s processes and systems.
A Protector mindset is cautious and prefers to slow down the pace of change. They are risk adverse and highly suspicious of growth. Protectors may not feel confident in the company’s financial strength and are slow to embrace the optimism of the future.
It’s Up to the CEO
A CEO with a controlling nature can virtually shut down the Builder-like capability in every single employee. Unless the CEO encourages communication, the Builders in the company will not step up and take risks and will quickly revert to Protector status.
By not sharing with the employees appropriate information about the company’s future plans or their current financial situation, the employees will always come from a Protector mindset, which can be interpreted by the CEO as an unwillingness to step up and get the job done.
There is serious risk that a company that may have had huge potential for growth will suddenly find itself with a culture of resistance, high staff turnover which can make the CEO’s life almost unbearable.
Determining Your Company’s B/P Ratio
There are specific signs happening today in your company that will immediately let you know how balanced your Builder/Protector Ratio is. A leader can get a good idea of their company’s B/P Ratio by
1) Tuning into the voltage (think energy) in the company
2) Talking to your leadership team and asking some pointed questions
3) Listening to your employees, really listening.
Taking a Close Look
1) Notice the following signs:
- Are people engaged in open and active dialogue?
- Are meetings productive, full of valuable information?
- How effective are the decisions being made?
- Is there a high rate of absenteeism or turnover?
2) Answer the Following Questions
- Does your leadership team or your employees appear optimistic about the future?
- Are they confident in the financial strength of the company?
- Do they have a high level of confidence in their co-workers?
- Are projects derailed or slowed down too often?
3) What are your employees saying?
- Is there too much behind the scenes gossiping?
- Do your managers or employees complain about a lack of accountability?
Creating a Confident/Builder Mindset
A leader can help create more of a Builder mindset in their company by doing one thing and doing it often. Communicate. Communicate where the company is going. Communicate why it is going there. Communicate what the goals of the company are today and for the future. Communicate to individuals daily. Get to know each employee. Share critical information all the time and do it often.
Confidence vs Caution
When the CEO becomes aware of the company’s B/P Ratio it can
1) make the most effective decisions in a timely manner
2) accept change as a part of the company’s culture and
3) engage employees in meaningful dialogue because they have helped design the strategic future of the company.
Confidence and The Bottom Line
A confident company is a more profitable, growing, thriving company.
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