How to successfully hand over the business you founded

May 14, 2020

It is never easy to walk away from something that you have put your time money and sweat into. According to Waceke Nduati, founder and former CEO of Centonomy, sometimes you have to step away from your company and take a different role that will be more beneficial to the organisation at the time. “Remember that you are not your company, it can function without you” says Waceke. She continues to share, “Some time back I looked back at my diary and I noticed that I had written back in 2012 that I will eventually step back from the CEO position, and that is exactly what I did in 2018”.

Letting go however has to be a process. You can’t just wake up one day and decide that you are handing everything over at once. You have to prepare your employees and make sure that they would function in your absence. “For me, I made a decision not to go to work on Mondays. I would not even pick calls on Mondays” says Waceke.  Even when employing people, her key metric was if you can be able to work without supervision and actually bring forth results, then you are good for Centonomy. The first time she brought in a different tutor, she almost stopped him after every second in class. “I had to learn that people are different and they will bring their different flair into things” says Waceke.

Another thing about being an entrepreneur is that people expect you to know everything, but you actually do not know as much as they expect you to. So you go to work with an imposter syndrome. Waceke explains that there are days that she has dressed up to go to work, got into her car and just felt that she just could not go. But by accepting this reality and verbalising it, then more ideas start coming your way from the staff. So if you are managing a team, don’t let them think that you know everything. They may have great ideas that would work well with the departments that they are in. Just learn to let go.

Waceke Nduati was a guest at Un.thinkable roast (our monthly 10X Growth Challenges Leaders meet-up) in April 2020. Click here to apply for membership in Un.thinkable.

Subscribe For Our Event Updates and Weekly 10X Newsletter