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Project Management Mentality VS. CEO Mentality

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project management mentalityA Letter to all of our white label partners,

Your long-term success is That Company’s goal. Which means the success of your clients is our goal. Now, how do you get the most out of what we have to offer, achieve greater profitability, and ultimately build a bigger, badder business?

One of the key differentiators for us in the white label / private label industry is how scalable our model is for our partners. We talk directly to your clients under your brand name, on the phone and with email addresses you setup for us. Are you taking advantage of that? If not you’re leaving likely leaving money on the table in the form of the potential time you can be doing other things.

We have some partners who love our service, believe in our capabilities, trust our integrity, yet they are not getting the full scalability and profitability they can out of what we have to offer. Why would someone do that?

It’s hard to transition from being a project manager into becoming a CEO. This is where most small businesses get stuck. A lot of small businesses rely on the owner for far to much! Thus they remain a small business. Why? Because, It’s hard to let go.

If you’re the entrepreneur that started the business, then you probably feel a lot of pride knowing everything about every single client that you work with. You don’t miss a beat. You know how their campaigns progress, you know their names, how much they pay, and likely have developed personal relationships with them and can tell me the names of their spouses and kids! You’re also used to working 80-100 hours a week, and you can’t imagine doing anything else but working exceptionally hard. While I don’t advocate being a workaholic I still applaud every entrepreneur out there that, goes, does, and works their butt off.

I’m not saying you have to slow down. In fact, I’m suggesting you get more out of the time you’re putting in. I’m telling you that if you asked our CEO what is happening with “x” account he would say “Let me have “y” manager answer that question for you.” He can’t know everything! We have too many accounts! He couldn’t possibly know the names of every single one of our partners and all of their clients. The fact is, I want to help you establish the same mentality. IT IS OKAY! You might now be that size right now, but… “Think big, Act big, and you will become big.”


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Let’s start here – What is your time worth?

I want you to stop being a project manager for a second and imagine that you’re a CEO being paid $450/hr ($936,000 a year). Now as a well paid CEO you of course want to deliver a great ROI to the business that is paying you such a fantastic salary. So how do you do that? Is it by being in every meeting with all of your clients? Of course not! As a CEO your role changes dramatically.

Our CEO shared a parable with me.project management mentality

He said this – Imagine you’re the best violin player in the orchestra, and then you get promoted to be the conductor. Your job is no longer to play the violin, but to the lead everybody by waving your conductor stick back and forth to keep everyone playing at the right tempo. If you see your the violinist that took your place struggling during a performance you can’t jump in and start playing violin, or the whole concert will far apart. YOU ARE A CONDUCTOR NOT A VIOLINIST!

So how do you provide the most value to the organization you’ve founded? Conducting. You build processes, build teams, build training programs, develop the professionals you’ve hired, etc. Now, you might be a small agency with only a couple of people, or maybe you don’t have any people yet, and it’s just you right now. How does all of this apply to you?

It applies because you’ve hired the world’s best private label marketing company (Yes, I honestly believe that.) We have lots of employees! Thus you have lots of employees! All of this means that once you understand what is being delivered to your clients you need to extract yourself from being in every meeting. Worse yet if you’re not letting our people meet with your clients and you’re the go between for “quality control” purposes ask yourself “Have we proven to deliver a quality product so far? Can we represent you and your brand well?” If you’re providing value added services that you’re charging for, then it makes sense for you to be in the meetings with your clients, but if your not providing other services that you discuss in the meetings we’re having with your clients, then let the people you’ve hired meet with clients and refocus your time and energy into business development and building your business. As a CEO the best thing as a very small 1-2 man shop business is focus time and energy on selling someone else’s time. If you’re going to sell your time then sell it for $450/hr, honestly the compounding impact of focusing your time on business development vs. delivering a service means that if you’re selling your time for less than $450/hr, then you’re selling yourself short. I know some of you are thinking “Yeah Right! I have a hard time selling my time for $75/hr much less $450/hr.” That’s okay you’re actually helping me make my point. I’d rather you not sell your time for $75/hr. Sell someone else’s time, someone that has a ton of experience, and if you sell more and more of some else’s time then in essence you’re helping make your value to be $450/hr through the collective effort of focusing your time on business development instead of spending your time on servicing a client.

Why am I writing this?

Because I have fantastic partners that get it, and quickly elevate themselves into being a CEO to grow their small business, and I have other partners we’ve worked with for years that continue to stay small because they let “needing to always know what’s going on”, “perfectionism”, and “needing to feel in control” hold them back.

You as a CEO absolutely should care that your company is delivering a quality product. I can tell you that I sure care! However use the law of big numbers to make your decisions. Not every client is going to be a home run, and you don’t need to be in every meeting to figure out if it was a home run or not. The retention rate of customers speaks for itself. If a customer is happy they keep using your service.

I can tell you that our best partners are not only out their hustling and working hard, but they’re using our capabilities to help them scale into a bigger business, and look for ways to extract themselves from playing the violin to become the best conductor that they can be.

I hope you find this useful, inspiring, and overall a profitable use of your time. After all if you’re carrying the mentality that you’re being paid $450/hr then this content better have been worth the time you took reading it. That Company is here to help you sell clients, service clients, and ultimately scale into a bigger business. Make sure you’re getting the full value.


Michael Knorr

VP Marketing & Sales

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