Successful CEOs Spend More Time Focused on the Future

Matt Lehrer, the founder of Teamwork Athletic Apparel, says leaders need to take steps to avoid getting bogged down by their company's day-to-day issues.
Teamwork Athletic Apparel CEO Matt Lehrer, right, speaks with a customer in an Inc. Trep Life mini-documentary.

Getting stuck on day-to-day operations can trip up any CEO. You need to get past putting out fires and work on gaining traction until your company can go through its logistical operations without a hitch.

Matt Lehrer, the founder and CEO of sports uniform company Teamwork Athletic Apparel, tells Inc. in a Trep Life mini-documentary that CEOs need to focus most of their thoughts and actions on the future.

"The business world is changing fast--and faster with each passing year. I have to be the person out there planting the flag and saying here's where we're going," Lehrer says. "If I don't do that job, we have a whole bunch of people running around in a scramble to keep up with today. There's so many examples of companies who lost it in a year, two, or three years' time because they didn't have the right strategy."

Lehrer says that failure can come quickly if you don't spend your time strategizing about future opportunities. "It's easy for talented companies to make big mistakes. And there's a lot of families, hundreds of families, thousands of people, who rely on those decisions," he says.

There's a lot of pressure as CEO, so make sure you hire the right people to take over the day-to-day issues. Once they're in place, you can turn your attention forward.

Below, catch more of Lehrer's tips and insights from his experience growing a small company into a multimillion-dollar enterprise.

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How Running a Business Is Like Flying a Plane

CEO Matt Lehrer has bootstrapped his customized athletic apparel business to 400 employees and growing--all while finding a way to incorporate his passion for flying and time with his family. Here's how he does it.

Last updated: Aug 12, 2014

WILL YAKOWICZ | Staff Writer | Reporter,

Will Yakowicz is a staff writer for Inc. magazine. He has covered business, crime, and local politics for The Brooklyn Paper and was the editor of Park Slope Patch. He has also reported in the West Bank and Moscow for Tablet Magazine. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

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