How Employees Can Think and Act Like Owners

5 common examples you can apply in your own company.

The first installment in our Landscape Business Success Series with Steven Cohen, Green Industry Consultant & Business Strategist

I like to say there are two types of mindsets in business: an ownership mindset and employee mindset. When someone is thinking like an owner, he or she will ask, “Since this is my business, how will I sell or deliver this product or service?” Or, “Would I request this piece of equipment for my department? Should I ask for another full-time position? How should I treat my employees?”

An ownership mindset steps out from behind titles and job descriptions to act on behalf of the customer and the company. You never hear someone with an ownership mindset say, “It’s not my job.” They never throw problems over functional walls (i.e. “Let me transfer you to ---”). They never make excuses. An ownership mindset caters to the organization’s mission, vision and values. A non-ownership mindset caters to WIFM, ‘What’s in it for me?'

5 examples of owner vs. non-owner mindset

1. Focuses on the performance and results of the business vs. focuses on how they are perceived by the chain of command.

2. Has the guts to ask tough questions, challenge the status quo by asking how they can make it better vs. being preoccupied with their own security and gravitating toward the predictable and less disruptive.

3. Disregards functional boundaries to consider what is good for the company vs. engages in tribalism and turf protection.

4. Will sometimes flex rules and regulations within the confines of professionalism to best serve those they serve vs. lives by the letter of the law, even if it is flat-out contrary to common sense and those they serve.

5. Pays attention to all the details vs. fails to notice details at any level.