How I Promoted Myself Out of the Job of CEO & Gained the Freedom to Step Into the Future

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I’ve had a lot of calls and questions in the last month in regards to what my role is here at Bild & Company since promoting Seth Garber, to the role of President and CEO. While I didn’t think people would notice, I was surprised how much interest there was- so I thought I would share, in hopes of inspiring you to up your own leadership game.

First, I’m still here! Promoting Seth means that I am no longer responsible for the day to day operations of Bild & Company. What I am responsible for is further developing my role as a thought leader within our industry.  It’s my job to challenge what I know and to think outside the box as healthcare transforms into what’s known as the future of care. This kind of opportunity, to impact the world on such a scale, only comes around once in a lifetime.

So many of you depend on me for knowledge and information and I want to exceed your expectations in every way. While Seth is busy working with our leadership team to bring the best recruiting, marketing and training platforms to our industry, I’m busy working with healthcare thought leaders, the department of health and reading as much as possible to gain insight into what we need to do for our clients today to position them for sustainability tomorrow. The changes coming forth are very real and will have lasting consequences for those leaders who fail to adapt. I want to make sure that you are on the winning side.

I’ve had many executives ask me how I was able to move out of my CEO role and in essence “turn it over” to someone else. Here are my Lessons in Leadership– take them or leave them. They worked for me and I am certain, they will for you’re too:

  1. Leave Ego at the Door: The greatest obstacle leaders face is letting go of their egos. It’s easy to assume that no one will get things done like you or that only you have the knowledge to lead being that you “started the company” or that just maybe… someone will do a better job than you. Mad at me yet? I’m just telling it like it is. My goal as a leader is to create people who are smarter and more strategic than I am. I love it when my team comes up with better ideas or outperforms me. Rather than looking at it as a threat, I take incredible pride in knowing that these amazing people are on my team. The best part about this if you are a business owner is freedom! Two years ago I lived in Paris for a month with my family. No one even knew I was gone! In fact, my team handled things so well that I never even got a phone call while I was away. Getting hives yet? Ha!
  2. Let Go of Control: I know, you’re not a control freak, right? Sure…The real test is your ability to let people take on projects, utilize their talent sets to roll them out, set the strategy, make tough decisions, and act on them without coming to you at every turn. People can’t learn if they don’t fail. My goal is to give people the gift of “confidence.” I want them to know that I believe in them, their abilities, and desire to do what’s best for the company. I understand that mistakes will be made and that at times, people will OMG…fail- but that is part of becoming great!
  3. Extract Your Team’s Natural Gifts & Talents: There are hidden gifts all around and you. Perhaps you’ve been so busy that you have not seen them… or dared to open them up! People are amazing and what I’ve learned is that everyone has a unique talent set or gift that is important to them and their future. It’s rare for an employees to just walk up and tell you what these gifts are. Besides, they don’t want to appear egotistical. So, as a leader, you must take the time to drill down and ask great questions of your team members such as: “What do you love to do, that I’m not aware of, what do you feel your natural talents or gifts are, if given the chance- what would you do with our company, do you see any opportunities we are missing as an organization?” You will be amazed with the responses you get. These types of questions led to the birth of Bild Marketing and Bild Recruiting, which are thriving divisions within our company that I would have never thought to do on my own!
  4. Use Your Voice for Good: Say what you think. Use your voice to recognize people for the great work they do, and do it often. Be specific as to what you like about their work and the impact it has on the company. Also, mentor and give advice freely on what people need to do to grow in their job skills and become better at what they do. Remember, it’s not what you say but how you say it. Be genuine in your desire to develop people.
  5. Put Yourself Out of a Job: For the past five years my goal has been to put myself out of a job. It started with reading the E Myth and continued with my passion for developing people. Our motto here at Bild has been “Put yourself out of a job by training up someone else.” That meant working to make the person coming up behind you even better than you! Remember, that means leaving ego and the urge to control everything at the door. I never realized that I would move beyond CEO- that was not the plan. Yet Seth came along and did the job so well, it was time for that next move in my life.

So that leads me back to today. I am as passionate as ever about Bild & Company and healthcare. I am energized by the many things I’m learning, the thought leaders I’m meeting, the keynotes I’m giving and the idea that once again, I might have a part in shaping the future of something as important as healthcare and the seniors we love so much (to book  me for your next event email tbild@tracibild.com).

I’ll be speaking at NCAL on March 11th, TALA on April 10th, May 6th MALA and at ALFA in May. Come check out my presentations and say hello!

Written by Traci Bild, Founder Bild & Company

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