Who Owns the Team

There are a number of great restaurants that my wife and I love to go to.  We are foodies and really enjoy good food as well as a good experience.  Depending on how well trained the staff or how low or high end the price will usually affect our experience in a big way.  One thing that is true in almost any restaurant we go to is this: if an owner is around, we can tell!  That is one of the reasons we love visiting small hole-in-the-wall places – because owners are usually in the mix in those environments.

In any environment owners stand out in a number of different ways:

Owners Show Up Differently – when you own something you show up ready to run it.  Owners show up prepared mentally and physically, they arrive early and stay late.  Workers show up and have their mind on where they have been or where they are going when they are done – owners stay singularly focused in the moment.

Owners Do Not Make Excuses – owners realize that passing the buck does not help the organization.  Blame, issues, breakdowns – these are things that owners face head on.  Owners know that making an excuse does not fix the problem, it just shifts it emotionally.  Owners take the attitude that if there is a problem to solve, they can be part of the solution.

Owners Set the Bar – Ultimately owners set the bar for everyone else in the organization.  This is about more than authority; it includes attitude and presence within the organization.  The quality of the work and the environment is determined by the owner.  They recognize if there is a shift that is needed or a new standard that is required, they must be the first to embody it and lead the way for others.

Now here is the unique thing about ownership – you don’t have to be the top leader to be the owner.  My wife and I have been fooled a number of times by great service, thinking a server or manager is the owner.  You see in any organization, on any team or within any church there can be many owners.  An owner isn’t simply the person on the top of the org chart or with their name on the deed – they are the people who help embody the vision and allow pressure and responsibility to rest on their shoulders.  Owners experience their destiny as intertwined with the organization they are a part of.  While they might not be the main generator for results, owners feel responsibility for results.

Ownership isn’t something bestowed, it is a choice each person must make.  On the team or areas that you lead – do you lead like an owner?

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