(0:55) Introducing Jim Robinson
(4:22) First lead yourself
(6:37) When are you ready to lead?
(6:24) Balancing Availability and Boundaries
(10:32) Listening to your team
(11:25) Knowledge of Business Operations & Vision
(13:48) Prioritizing Both The Mission and Your People
(17:06) Servant Leadership in Local Communities
(20:51) The Takeaway & Wrap Up
“Hate Fridays, love Mondays.” (2:58) - Jim Robinson
“ If money is your sole focus, or that golden egg on that one project… I can assure you, you won't have 36 years in business, you'll have about 3.6 minutes. It's a radically different thought process than a lot of businesses.” (15:45) - Jim Robinson
“You have got to go have a new experience, whether it's an expensive restaurant you wouldn't normally go to, or a resort, something that you wouldn't normally experience. You have to go do these things because they open you.” (5:21) - Jim Robinson
“What worked today isn't going to get us where we need to be tomorrow. It's now a new survival skill and it's only going to help us survive today.” (13:20) - Jim Robinson
"You have to give back or you will not receive. You'll see people that do this drown very quickly. If they're just focused on self-success rather than helping others." 20:13) - Jim Robinson
Foundations of a Successful Leader
Shawn Black had the opportunity to sit with Jim Robinson, CEO, and President of CGP Maintenance and Construction Services, on the latest FM Evolution episode. We are continuing our leadership series for this podcast, so get your pen and paper ready; you will want to write this down!
Jim is an author, business coach, speaker, non-profit chairman, and fellow podcaster (Consistently Great Performance with Jim Robinson.) Therefore, it is no surprise that he is beyond qualified to pass on this plethora of leadership advice.
"Your potential to lead others is a direct result of how you lead yourself." - Craig Groeschel
You Can't Lead Others Until you Lead Yourself
Your daily habits form you into the person and eventual leader that you are in your sphere of influence. Each decision in private does affect your interactions in public. Learning to lead yourself is synonymous with having self-discipline. Knowing the beneficial choices you can make throughout your day, and forming them into habitual rhythms is the first step in becoming a leader from the inside out.
Every day that you wake up, you create habits and routines based on things you have to do, want to do, should do, and so on. If a task is remedial, Jim has set up a system where he does 4, 6,8, or maybe ten things within one set time of completing the task. Then, there are the habits that are incredibly critical that get undivided attention. For Jim, that looks like his time of prayer, meditation, and a long walk. Sprinkling in new experiences into the fold of this rhythm can give you exposure to new things. This is important to help you understand yourself, learn more, and potentially give you new disciplines.
"You have got to go have a new experience, whether it's an expensive restaurant you wouldn't normally go to, or a resort, something that you wouldn't normally experience. You have to go do these things because they open you.” (5:21) - Jim Robinson
When Can Someone Lead?
It may sound like a paradox, but you will be ready to lead when you see others following you. Whatever lane that you see others following you in will become your expertise. By being observant of your own knowledge on the subject and the impact of others in that sphere, you can begin to get a grip on where you lead and where you do not. Having the self-control to know where you need to ask questions and learn and where you need to step up and debate is crucial.
"Self-awareness is the first key. Then people will follow you. Then you go all in." (7:53) - Jim Robinson
Balancing Availability and Boundaries
The balance comes from being flexible and knowing what is best for you as a leader, for Jim, that looks like adding 15 extra minutes onto meetings to have an intentional time of being available to more profound conversion, random questions, and countering the concept of rushing out into the next meeting.
When it comes to moments of immediate need, what some call crunch time, Jim leans into simplifying the problem. By asking simple questions and calming the situation, a complex situation can be broken down into what is going on and what needs to happen to solve the problem.
Understanding The Day To Day alongside the Vision of your Business
Taking time to understand both the concrete financial side of your company and the academic mission is imperative to leading well. Some team members will fall to one side or the other with their passions and skills, and speaking into both will create a well-rounded leader.
Listening to Your Team
By making it a mandatory practice to include every team member in the discussion, it takes away the problem of a team member not being heard. Creating meetings where each person had to bring forth ideas and claim their responsibility sets the stage for a team-based culture rather than a dictatorship.
Money vs. The Customer
After 36 years in the facility service business, Jim has seen many ways to find the balance between prioritizing the mission, product, or project while still prioritizing the people. The foundation starts with choosing not to have anxieties tied to money. This will then lend you the ability to focus on the client's wants and needs. With that in mind, the time, sacrifice, and necessities to reach the goal will be clearer. Yes, money is essential for a business to continue, but you have to look beyond it. 40% of businesses fail within 3 years, and almost all in that category went in with the sole purpose of making money.
"If money is your sole focus, or that golden egg on that one project… I can assure you, you won't have 36 years in business, you'll have about 3.6 minutes. It's it's radically different thought process than a lot of businesses.” (15:45) - Jim Robinson
Servant Leadership in Local Communities
Involvement outside of the office can often be overlooked. Knowing the needs within your local community, then serving benefits your leadership and your team every time. Each person comes with a set of gifts, talents, and time, and what better way to use it than for others in need. This can then impact the culture of your team to look outside themselves and serve in other ways back in your business.
"You have to give back or you will not receive. You'll see people that do this drown very quickly. If they're just focused on self-success rather than helping others." (20:13) - Jim Robinson
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