Harvard lecturer and author Ronald Heifetz popularised the metaphor of the dance floor and the balcony in the context of leadership. As a business owner, you may be consumed by the day-to-day challenges you face in your business. Being stuck on the ‘dance floor’ and running the business based on the tyranny of the urgent.
Sometimes, business owners need to get off the dance floor to “gain both a clearer view of reality and some perspective on the bigger picture”, that is, to ‘step on to the balcony’. Having this clarity is important in being able to run your business efficiently, plan for growth, seize new opportunities, or looking ahead to avoid a future crisis.
There are always times when a business owner needs to be hands-on, because you know that “if you want to affect what is happening, you must return to the dance floor.” The challenge for business owners is getting the balance right, when to be on the dance floor and when to go up to the balcony - knowing how to use one to leverage the other.
Your business coach can help you develop awareness around knowing when to step on to the balcony, challenging you to see the bigger picture and get a clearer view of reality. Working with you to identify and consider your options, your coach will help you determine the actions you need to take to move towards achieving your business vision and personal goals – all while you keep the music pumping on the dance floor!
Quotes: Heifetz, R., and Linsky, M. Leadership on the Line: Staying Alive Through the Dangers of Leading. Boston: Harvard Business School Press, 2002.