Do you put your oxygen mask on first?

Business Oxygen Masks

On an airplane, the flight attendant tells us in case of an emergency to put our own oxygen mask on before we help others with theirs. Thankfully, most of us never need to follow through with this instruction.

But what about in real life? When we’re in a crisis, do we put our own oxygen mask on first? Or do we first try to save those around us?

Self-sacrifice vs self-care

In times of stress and challenge, we often forget about self-care. We put everyone else’s needs before ours, at the risk of our needs, mental and emotional wellbeing, and careers.

The result is that we are unable to reach our potential, fulfil our roles and truly be of service to others.

If you’re a business owner or CEO fighting everyone else’s fires, consider the costs. How does it affect your business, career, health and wellbeing? How does it impact your team and family? Is it worth it?

We must stop to fit our own mask and breathe, so we can step up and help others.

Get an advisory board and breathe

An advisory board will identify the areas of your business that need the most oxygen. It will highlight what you need to stop, start or keep doing, so you may begin to put your oxygen mask on first.

An advisory board will conduct a business growth assessment to ensure you have:

  • The right people you can delegate to.

  • A well-communicated business vision and purpose.

  • Goals and key performance indicators for your business and career.

  • A plan to achieve these goals.

  • Insight into the external business environment.

  • An understanding of your target market, their pains, problems, and buying journey.

  • Knowledge of the size, scale and profitability of your business.

  • The ability to explain how your business delivers differently.

  • The X factor in your business and career.

When we put others’ needs ahead of our own, we lose sight of the bigger picture. We struggle to understand our business and its people, products, services, values and opportunities.

And by forgetting our oxygen masks, we teach our staff that they should forget theirs. The business culture then becomes one of inefficient processes, poor performance and burnout.

One CEO I recently worked with was at breaking point. Her oxygen mask had fallen by the wayside, so we sat down and did a business growth score to identify what areas of her career and business needed the most oxygen. The score indicated she needed to focus on market positioning, implement clear systems and processes, and recruit a chief operating officer. The result is that the CEO now has her oxygen mask firmly secured, and so does the rest of the business from a performance, profitability and productivity perspective.

Think about your business, and ask yourself:

  • Do your people put their oxygen masks on first so they can fully live the business’s values?

  • Is everyone clear on their roles and responsibilities?

  • Do you have a rewards and recognition scheme?

  • Do you have the right people in the right jobs?

  • Do you upskill your people?

  • Have you systemised the business?

  • Do you have a solid and predictable cash flow?

  • Do you focus on creating business assets?

  • Do you have a sound set of KPIs everyone can work towards?

If you struggle to answer these questions, it’s time to undergo a Business Health Check. Let us give you an overview of your business so you can breathe easy again.

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