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When Should You Send In The Clowns

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December 3, 2018

When Should You Send In The Clowns?

Maybe its Barbra Streisand, or a sudden flashback to your paralyzing childhood fear, but beyond the exaggerated makeup — happy, sad, frustrated, angry — you name the emotion, clowns rarely leave you guessing.

A clown’s wide range of expression bears some relevance to entrepreneurial leadership.Really, there’s a connection here.  Particularly in startup environments, it’s not uncommon to wear multiple hats internally and externally.  Or, to practice daily the art of code switching between roles.

So this week, we’re wondering how might we become masters of many faces?

Starts with what might seem like a surprising question: who are you working for?  Sure, you have a salary or employer.  Yet, often, the answer is not that simple.  Sometimes it’s your team, customer, community, or vision that make equal demands on your time.  Once you understanding how your personal resources are allocated, you can know which hat to wear.

Second, start from the inside then work your way out.  Are there direct (hard expenditures) or indirect (lost productivity) costs associated with the role ? If so, can you fit them in? Whether its time, money, mentorship, or something more, how you  show up for a role is defined in large part by the actual inputs and likely outputs it requires.

We hate abstraction just as much as the next person, so this chart make understanding this two-step process a bit easier:

The key takeaway from this exercise: avoid showing up as someone with multiple personalities. The end goal is to balance competing obligations or interests.  With a little planning, you will be just fine!

Cheers,

Venture Cafe Miami

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