...and other insights from the 2022 Twin Cities CEO + Leadership Team Bootcamp with Shannon Susko
The day began on a high note, with over 50 businesses from the Twin Cities represented in the room. For many, today symbolized a reset: a rare opportunity to take a break from the norm and focus on their business and its growth, rather than the day-to-day tasks within it.
Hosts Glen Dall and Jeff Redmon welcomed the group and introduced Shannon Byrne Susko, three-time business book author and two-time successful CEO. Shannon found an easy rapport with the crowd, beginning this meeting (as she trains her coaches to do) with a round of “Good News.”
One team attending shared that a new team member was joining for today’s Bootcamp one week before her start date. Another had just confirmed a huge sales milestone - double the revenue from 2020 and 2021 in just the past two weeks!
Why is it important to start the meeting with Good News?
Starting the meeting with Good News, Shannon told us, not only builds cohesion and sets a positive tone for the meeting; it can get a Leadership Team on the same page in a powerful way. And getting on the same page was exactly what these teams had come here to do.
“As Business Leaders, what are some of the biggest challenges we face when it comes to growing our companies?”
Shannon posed this question to the group. Among the challenges mentioned were:
Time, People (finding them and motivating the ones you have), Confidence to Lead, Energy, Organization, and dealing with Market Changes. Susko, clad in black with her massive belt buckle glinting, asked, “and which one of these do we have the most control over?”
We decide how to control our time, our most valuable resource, she explained. So often that resource slips away unintentionally, wasted on fire-fighting, and we begin to feel that Time is instead controlling us. If our time is finite, how can we spend it doing the things that give us joy and energy - not grinding at all hours to grow a business?
This was the topic of our day. Susko developed her own answer to that question over the course of several years, in the form of the Metronomics system. Step by step, she walked our leaders through the process she built while scaling her own companies. Throughout the day, we returned to the theme of time, especially in the form of commitment.
“Anyone can do this. The first thing you need is a CEO and Leadership Team with the willingness and desire to evolve behavior.”
The seed for growth to work, Susko told us, is commitment in the form of willingness and desire to evolve behavior. The Metronomics system “is human,” in her words, and draws on the idea attributed to James Clear, author of Atomic Habits: “you do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems.”
In other words, to actually “grow up” your company and sustain its growth, you need to evolve the behavior, habits, and systems lived day in and day out by your team - and yourself.
Will it feel easy? Absolutely not. But that is where the willingness and desire come in. With each new tool that Shannon worked through with the teams in attendance, she encouraged them to “Gut It Out”. When they’d had some time to do that, she’d tell them to leave it at “Good Enough” in order to keep moving, keep evolving, and leave the day with (yes, an exhausted brain) but also a foundation and a plan to begin the gradual evolution of behavior company-wide the very next day.
Five Keys to build your Foundation for Solid 3X Growth
One of the biggest takeaways from the day was Shannon’s “Five Keys” for building the foundation for growth. As she spoke about each, phones could be seen rising into the air, snapping photos of the slide. It was clear that, as hard as each team had been working on gutting out the more “hard-edge” strategic tools of the day, this soft-edge insight was integral for success.
Each of the five keys describes a habit, and each one requires a leader willing to commit the time it takes to evolve behavior. Offering her own answer to the question of biggest obstacles to growth, Susko said leaders are most commonly what stands in the way of a business achieving the success it envisions.
“Leaders are the metronome of a company,” she said, explaining why she wears a belt buckle with an image of a metronome on it. As leaders, you set the rhythm for the rest of the team to follow. You literally control time, in terms of how it is spent in your business.
“If you want to grow your business, Have a Plan. Defined - long, short, and now - plan to win. And look at it every day.” She closed out by telling the group, “If the CEO doesn’t look at (the plan) every day, it doesn’t happen. If the team doesn’t look at it and talk about it every day, we don’t learn how to win.”
The 50+ companies who joined us for the CEO+ Leadership Team Bootcamp left with a playbook and a plan for achieving their 3 Year Highly Achievable Goal, and beginning to evolve behavior starting the very next day. As Susko said, anyone can do this by following the system she lays out in Metronomics, but the best way to grow up your business is with a coach.
How can Metronomics work for YOUR company? Coach Keith Upkes breaks it down
Fall in love with systems, not goals. Wisdom from James Clear.
Want to speed up the time it takes to grow? As Shannon says: "Get a *%@!ing coach!"