Follow Dallas Linkedin
Email Dallas Email
Business Growth
Mar 6, 2015

How Business Owners Can Clear A Mental Fog

Sponsored Content provided by Dallas Romanowski - Managing Partner, Cornerstone Business Advisors

Since 2008, Cornerstone Advisory Partners has run peer advisor boards, which gives business owners the opportunity to confidentially talk about opportunities, challenges and other issues with other business owners.
 
Below Rob Kaiser, publisher of Greater Wilmington Business Journal and an advisory board member since 2009, shares his experience about serving on a board.
 
The same thing always happens about an hour into the meeting.
 
I exhale.
 
My peer advisory board meets once a month from 8 a.m. to noon. The night before each meeting, I stare at my calendar in disbelief that I’m going to lose an entire morning of chopping away at my to-do list.
 
But about an hour into the meeting, I feel the mental fog lifting. Details, deadlines and other daily concerns begin to evaporate. I start seeing the forest from the trees.
 
Usually this happens while someone else is talking about their opportunities or challenges. Thinking about their situation lends perspective and insight to issues I’m confronting — particularly if their challenges are tougher than mine!
 
Think of a peer advisory board as your personal board of directors.
 
My board includes the owners of seven local businesses — a roofing company, financial planning firm, insurance agency, technology company, home builder, digital marketing agency and media company.
 
None of us are competitors. We’re in completely different industries, but nearly all of our challenges fall into similar categories — hiring, managing and incentivizing employees, evaluating business opportunities, sales, marketing and finances.
 
Topics can range from significantly restructuring a company’s focus to recommendations for CRM software.
 
Most of the meeting focuses on each person presenting an issue, and then the rest of the board asking questions and giving recommendations. I usually learn as much from the other challenges and recommendations than when it’s my turn for input.
 
Most of our board has been together for more than six years.
 
We know each other’s businesses. We know each other’s strengths and weaknesses. We call bull---- on each other.
 
When somebody brings up a significant issue one month, but doesn’t mention it the next month, someone will usually ask for an update.
 
If you tell the board you’re going to do something before the next meeting, you strive to get it done if only to avoid having to lamely report back that you didn’t do it. This creates an accountability that small business owners usually don’t face.
 
Another benefit of being on the board is meeting privately once a month with the board’s facilitator.
 
Our facilitator, Dallas Romanowski, does a great job in two significant ways beyond running the meetings efficiently.
 
First, he always starts with personal goals, instead of business goals. Rather than solely considering how to maximize income, business decisions are driven by personal goals of how you want to spend your time and purse your interests, and long-term financial and lifestyle goals. 
 
Second, Dallas doesn’t try to act like an expert in your business or industry, which he obviously can’t be. But by working with dozens of companies in a range of industries, he’s able to share ideas and lessons from other business owners with similar issues.
 
My only complaint about Dallas is that he’s a fan of walking meetings, so sometimes we’ll show up at his air-conditioned office in business attire on a 90-degree, August afternoon only to be told we’ll be walking outside for the next hour.
 
But seriously, if you’re a business owner, I’d highly recommend looking into a peer advisory board and working with someone like Dallas to keep the mental fog at bay.
 
The Cornerstone team includes former C-Level executives, successful entrepreneurs and advisors who offer unmatched experience in delivering advanced, custom-tailored, results-oriented solutions for business leaders. Cornerstone has worked with hundreds of companies that range from fast-growth start-ups to Fortune 500 corporations. It developed the Performance Culture System™ to help clients implement best practices and drive high performance throughout their organization. For more information, visit www.launchgrowexit.com, call 910-681-1420, or email [email protected].
 

Other Posts from Dallas Romanowski

Bizjournalblockad
Ico insights

INSIGHTS

SPONSORS' CONTENT
Michaelhiggins 41019104338

Unique Ways To Always Remember Loved Ones

Michael Higgins - Dignity Memorial
Carolinemontgomery4

PPP Forgiveness - What You Need To Know

Caroline Montgomery - Adam Shay CPA, PLLC
Chris coudriet

New Hanover County Offers Expertise And Resources For Safe Reopening

Chris Coudriet - New Hanover County Government

Trending News

Publisher’s Note: What Didn’t Happen Last Night

Rob Kaiser - Jun 1, 2020

Businesses, Law Enforcement Take Stock Of Protest Aftermath

Staff Reports - Jun 1, 2020

Friday Deadline For County's $10K Small Business Grants

Cece Nunn - Jun 1, 2020

Along S. Kerr Ave., Apartments And Commercial Space In The Works

Cece Nunn - Jun 2, 2020

Alcami Corp. Adds To Senior Leadership Team

Christina Haley O'Neal - Jun 2, 2020

In The Current Issue

Phases Aim To Aid Economy Safely

Included in our new lingo these days besides “social distanc­ing” (staying 6 feet apart) and COVID-19 (the novel coronavirus) are “phase one...


MADE: Spicing Up Local Markets

RAWsalsa is a local, independent maker and seller of smallbatch, fresh salsas. Products include signature fresh tomato and fresh pineapple s...


Info Junkie: Rhonda Bellamy

Rhonda Bellamy, executive director of the Arts Council of Wilmington/New Hanover County, shares her top tech and info picks....

Book On Business

The 2020 WilmingtonBiz: Book on Business is an annual publication showcasing the Wilmington region as a center of business.

Order Your Copy Today!


Galleries

Videos

2019 Health Care Heroes
August 26, 2019 Power Breakfast: A Healthy Sale?
2019 WILMA Leadership Accelerator
2019 WilmingtonBiz Expo Keynote Lunch - CEO, nCino, Pierre Naude`