THE FOUNDER’S MINDSET

“It’s not about working harder; it’s about working the system.”

-Evan Spiegel

One action of a visionary changes an entire system. It is thus important that leaders take one transformative decision a day, instead of taking ten trifling decisions. Systems are built, not only by prescience, but also by attention to detail. A million details make an idea. If the idea is owned and crafted carefully, the system remains sustainable. Ownership of ideas and systems is achieved through founders, who build organizations brick by brick.

Profits and growth are hard to come by as one in ten companies achieve both. Research found that founder led companies achieve long term profits. Founders build companies from inside, which influences company success on the outside. This is not just a practice but is Founder’s Mindset. The entirety of a successful organization banks on its purpose. Unfortunately, as organizations grow, complexity also grows along, eventually eliminating their purpose. Once a firm loses its purpose, it also loses the connect with its employees.

Founder’s mindset invites dialing up speed to act and take personal responsibility for risk and cost. Founders have the moral authority to make hard choices. They have better instincts and know the detail of the business. They believe in sustainability with a long-term perspective on investment and building a company that lasts. Founders believe that power lies with the front runners, as they are the people who are in the closest vicinity to the customers. Founders hold front line obsession in a big way because, holding the front line keeps the business instinctive.

Leaders today, must compellingly develop the founder’s mindset as a strategic asset and spread awareness, measure and monitor it in their organizations. Companies that achieve sustainable growth share a common set of motivating attitudes and behaviors that can only come from the founder. Businesses must profitably scale, while maintaining the internal traits that got them there at the first place. Internal traits sometimes act like insurgents that wage a war on the industry and its norms on behalf of an undeserved customer. A deep-rooted thinking from the founder can fitfully drive the company to question the industry on behalf of the customer. Founder’s mindset hence drives change and creates a new industry altogether.

Companies instilled with founder’s mindset foster personal responsibility in their employees. According to statistics, returns to the shareholders in the companies, whose growth is driven by founders are thrice more profitable. These companies are obsessed with the details of the business and celebrate employees at the front line. Leaders must assess how a company rates on the elements of founder’s mindset. A motivated leader feels that it is important to discuss one-to-one with the management on the following aspects:

  1. Does everyone understand the company’s insurgent vision?
  2. Does everyone think and act like an owner?

As a closing note, companies thriving through strategic planning and invest in people, processes and tools that help identify the most important strategic priorities. This process creates time for focused strategic debates and engages thinking at every level in an organization. As founders foster the voice of their customers, the front line in the organization falls in place, encouraging every employee to think strategically and translate that strategy into action.