We all know that business owners are looking for answers to their growth concerns, not more questions. When you talk to a business owner about the Non-Negotiable Rules, they have a tendency to get a bit ‘prickly’ because entrepreneurs don’t really like rules.

The value of the NNRs are quite simply:

They help a business owner figure out what they don’t know
They help get that business owner thinking about areas of their company they hadn’t thought about before
They focus the business owners efforts on the mission critical aspects of their stage of growth
They give that business owner headlights into the future to be prepared for what’s coming
They provide a rallying point for the entire company

The facilitation of the Non-Negotiable Rules exercise during an X-Ray is where 80% of the issues you’ll be capturing, show up.

The conversations are:








It’s worth your time to help a business owner solve the Non-Negotiable Rules for their stage of growth While the X-Ray allows the business owner and his/her team to do a deep dive into their current NNRs and the two earlier stages of growth, you can also engage a business owner in a conversation centered around their NNRs.

If you are meeting with a Stage 2 business owner, here are a series of questions you can become curious about in order to 1) get a conversation going and 2) help that business owner drill down into areas that need their attention.

RULE #1: SELL ABSOLUTELY EVERY DAY. • Do you organize your schedule to sell every day? • Have you set up an effective sales process? • Do you have a contact management system in place to effectively follow up with leads, prospects and clients?

RULE #2: DEVELOP, WITHOUT FAIL, THREE EMPLOYEE LEADERS TO BE RESPONSIBLE, ACCOUNTABLE AND PROACTIVE. • Have you defined clear roles of responsibility with three supervisor candidates? • Do you meet weekly one-on-one with these supervisors to support their commitment to performance-based goals? • Do you reward these key supervisors when they proactively demonstrate signs of leadership?

RULE #3: CREATE A DAILY, WEEKLY AND MONTHLY KEY INDICATOR INSTRUMENT PANEL/FLASH SHEET. • Have you determined key health indicators for each department in your company? • Have you organized a system to engage the daily collection of key health indicator data from staff? • Have you formulated a daily, weekly and monthly flash sheet system report you can review regularly?

RULE #4: COMMUNICATE ANY AND ALL DIRECTIONS IN WRITING. • Have you set up a simple CEO memo system template when communicating with staff that sets priority level of tasks, purpose, objectives and directions? • Do you have a retrieval system for all written memo directions? • Do you use the written memos during work performance reviews?

RULE #5: DRIVE SMALL ACTION TEAMS TO HIT GOALS. • Do you set clear and agreed upon action team goals? • Do you organize and facilitate crisp action team meetings? • Do you organize/review regular team action lists and delegate tasks and due dates?

Be aware of how these NNRs support everything that’s happening in Stage 2. The challenges include Hiring quality people. (Rule #2) Improve sales. (Rule #1) Cash flow. (Rule #3) Leadership/Staff Communication Gap. (Rule #4 and #5) Limited capital. (Rule #3)

How about the top gate of focus? Profit. And the CEO modality? Dominant. Visionary and Specialist faces are 40%.

These rules of the road will fundamentally help a business owner make better decisions. By keying in on these critical elements for their current stage of growth, they’ll begin to proactively manage their growth instead of letting growth manage them.

Become confident in talking about the NNRs. Remember that if we can put a name to a problem, we can solve it! Go out there and solve!

I cover all of the Non-Negotiable Rules in my series of books on the 7 Stages of Growth. Looking for a gift for a client? Or a great resource? 

Find them here:


Questions? I’m just an email or phone call away and I’m here to help.


Your success. My passion.
Laurie Taylor, FlashPoint!