Principle 3:
Surrender Sovereignty

This principle says that the entrepreneur must change his or her management style in order to get over the brick wall. Most successful entrepreneurs say this is the most challenging change they had to undergo. A transformation from a hands-on management to a professionally run company is a core theme heralded by successful entrepreneurs. They say there is a point of development when it is physically and financially infeasible to continue doing everything themselves. Functional specialists are needed to overcome the brick wall.


  1. Surrender the sovereignty of decision making
  2. Hire management specialists to get back the fun of being an entrepreneur
  3. Align people in the fight direction
  4. Motivate and empower
  5. Adapt and grow your management style

Maxim 1: Surrender the sovereignty of decision making.

Successful entrepreneurs say that one of the most difficult challenges for them was to let go and turn over some of the authority for making decisions to others in the company. They understood their role had to change to one of coordinating efforts and leading the company. Starting early on, a company requires hands-on management, with complete involvement of the entrepreneur in everything. Getting over the brick wall requires just the opposite. Successful entrepreneurs said that it is necessary to recognize, and then be able and willing to let go, listen to, and work with the people they hire. These are the people who will help make the transition to growth.

Maxim 2: Hire management specialists to get back the fun of being an entrepreneur.

Surrendering sovereignty does not mean turning the company over to somebody. It means hiring management specialists. Successful entrepreneurs described again and again how they reached a point where they were working 16 hour days and running every aspect of the company, with indications that each extra hour of their time was paying back less and less. It was no longer fun being an entrepreneur. Hiring specialists enabled them to get back the fun of being an entrepreneur and lead the company to the next level of growth and fulfill their visions.

Maxim 3: Align people in the right direction.

Rather than concentrate on the day-to-day operations of the company, successful entrepreneurs entrust these details to the specialists, and work on aligning and focusing their employees in the right direction. Again, surrendering sovereignty does not mean relinquishing control. Nor is it purely delegation of authority. It is also the alignment of thought processes of those to whom the entrepreneur transfers authority. With proper alignment and maintenance of the alignment process, they still share in the decision making. Successful entrepreneurs reduce resistance to change and overcome the brick wall by telling the people where they want to go, by persevering, and by working harder than anyone else. Along those same lines, they stress the importance of leading the company and getting the people excited about reaching the next level of objectives.

Maxim 4: Motivate and empower.

Successful entrepreneurs say that they could not get over the brick wall by themselves. They needed help from others. They also say that it is more than simply hiring laborers and giving them a job to do. To lead the company over the brick wall, successful entrepreneurs say that it is important to motivate the people by recognizing them as individuals and allowing them to share in the problems and successes of the company.

Maxim 5: Adapt and grow your management style as your company adapts and grows.

This entire process of surrendering sovereignty is an interactive process between the entrepreneur and the company. Successful entrepreneurs say that they changed as the demands of growth and of the company required it. However, these changes in management style represent premeditated commitment to change. What distinguishes successful entrepreneurs from those who are unable to overcome the brick wall is the fact that the former recognize they too must change along with their companies. Growth requires successfully adapting and personally growing.

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