July 2, 2014 § Leave a comment
One common theme that came up at Entrepreneurs Club is that most of us tend to be “heads-down technicians.” We obsess over the work we need to do, the products we need to deliver to our customers, and how to become better at our craft.
At one level, that is a positive trait. That’s why we’re good at what we do, why people value our services, and why we have the self-confidence to even consider running our own business.
But it can also give us tunnel vision, making it easy to forget that:
- God is in control
- People are more important than products
- Working on the business is more central than working in the business
Michael Gerber’s previous book, E-Myth Revisited, focused on #3. He talked about how most small businesses are started by “technicians with an entrepreneurial seizure”, who are primarily interested in working for themselves, rather than “true entrepreneurs” who are serious about growing a business that is bigger than themselves.
His latest book, E-Myth Mastery, addresses the second problem: we can become so obsessed with working on the business, with the result that we burn ourselves out. The solution is to get in touch with our inner passion, align it with a meaningful purpose, and keep that purpose strictly aligned with a bigger vision. Otherwise, either our passion will steer us out of control, or our purpose will drive us into the ground. An over-arching vision is essential to ensuring our business is making both ourselves and other people healthy, happier, more productive human beings.
Concerning the third problem: Michael and his books are deeply spiritual, but appears to draw mostly on Jewish and Eastern mysticism. As such, it doesn’t recognize that our passions are given to us by a loving Father whose ultimate purpose is for us to find our fulfillment in knowing Him and spreading His glory. In theory, Christians should be even better entrepreneurs, because we have a community of faith to help us discern God’s will for our lives and business, and His Spirit and Scripture to channel our passion, purpose and vision.
Tragically, that is not always the case. Apparently theology is known for being the least entrepreneurial major. I sometimes worry that church culture may have become too inward-focused and risk-avoidant.
Let’s see what we can do to change that!