We truly only control two things in life.
How we think and how we feel.
I learned this lesson the hard way after I unsuccessfully thought I could control my employees performance during the early part of my career.
In 2008, I had a plan for expanding our marketing efforts from 5 to 20 states. I hired someone and made sure to give extremely detailed instructions.
A month later, nothing was done.
I then brought someone else in the company on and explained our goals with the same level of detail. Within two weeks, our plan was executed to reach the expansion goals we had set.
Then, it hit me like a ton of bricks: At the end of the day, I had very little control on what the people involved were going to do.
Learning this lesson has been freeing as an entrepreneur. Until that point, I thought I had control over the results of those in the company. After I realized I did not, instead of trying to managing people, I work on managing agreements I make with them.
This gives them ownership of their results while allowing me the opportunity to provide leadership and guidance.