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Many business owners are away from the office more than ever. They’re travelling more and for longer times. Clients are no longer based solely in the U.S., but are now of the international variety. The technological advances of the past decade afford many businesses these incredible opportunities. There are times, however, when video teleconferencing and email won’t serve your needs and only a week on another continent will suffice. Having a staff you trust in your absence is a must. Are your employees loyal and share the same business ethics? Can you rely on them to represent your business in your absence? A. Harrison Barnes, career coach and founder says these are legitimate concerns that some business owners aren’t comfortable answering.

If you’re not surrounded by a group of people whom you trust, odds are, you and your business is being held back. It’s the psychology of business. It’s not at all that you’re narcissistic and believe if you are not at the office each morning, the entire outfit falls apart; but rather, it’s that if your employees aren’t showing an enthusiasm for seeing you, your business and even their own careers flourish, you’re never fully focused on other matters that need your attention. That business trip to Europe means you’re going to spend several hours on a flight, consumed by what’s not being done at the office and when you’re at the office, your concern is on getting those big contracts on other continents. If only you could clone yourself.

Since cloning isn’t an option, and really, who would want to? Your priority should be on cultivating your current relationships with employees while also remaining open to bringing new talent on board. Keeping an open mind to the possibilities goes a long way in ensuring you miss nothing when it comes to courting the bi-lingual recent college graduate who majored in engineering technologies. Just as importantly, says A. Harrison Barnes, is the ability to recognize those who simply won’t fit into the office dynamics, regardless of their educational background, will go a long way in allowing you to lift that stress off your shoulders.

The founder suggests asking yourself if there ever come a day when you had to place the lion’s share of keeping the business profitable on a long term basis, would you know who that would be? If you can’t think of single employee, or even a business partner, for that matter, you really should rethink your hiring formulas. Knowing you have a single employee who has your back is as important as your profits each year. Before you can recognize that employee, you have to define that employee. It could be that your office manager, who is a whiz at keeping costs down and who wouldn’t spend a dime without either your clearance or a certainty that the expenditure is necessary, is that one bright star who you’d trust. Maybe it’s one of the supervisors who has an intricate knowledge of the goings-on from day to day. Without this employee, you’ll never find peace away from the office. That, regardless of your success, is an almost guaranteed leave of absence due to health problems that develop as a result.

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