There are three type of entrepreneurs. The majority are either makers or managers. The third type is the rare combination of both. Assuming you fall in the majority case, you will eventually have a big problem to solve as you start to scale your company.
If you want to focus on being just a manager and not a maker, who will lead product innovation? If you want to focus on being just a maker and not a manager, who will lead your employees?
Fred Wilson did a nice write-up on this conundrum earlier this year on his blog in a post titled Becoming A Boss. Wilson’s primary point is:
the time and energy and passion for making things can be all consuming and managing people can also be all consuming. Doing both well is really hard.
He also points out the following:
The maker/manager conflict sits at the heart of many of the development challenges that founder/CEOs deal with as they scale their companies and scale themselves. Conquering it is possibly your greatest opportunity and will lead to your biggest success.
In the full blog post Wilson shares several personal stories including one from his venture capital firm’s CEO summit, and one particularly telling story about an entrepreneur that he worked with in the past.
Please read the entire post over on Fred Wilson’s blog to get the full essence of his advice.