I have my ways of doing things and a few months back it got framed in a nice way (thanks Simon!) in relation to my work at Ministry of Testing. In hindsight, I also realise it is just the way I like to do things.
I got called a 'Master Puppeteer' - as in I pull all the strings to make things happen and I'm very much a behind the scenes kind of person.
I didn't really intentionally go out and plan it that way, I think it's just more the case that I love making things happen, but because I'm incredibly introverted I had to find a different way to make progress. I didn't feel comfortable taking center stage or trying to put myself out there as an expert, it wasn't what motivated me.
What motivated me was creating a platform for software testers to belong.
So, I've named the way I built up the roots of Ministry of Testing as The Master Puppeteer Model.
I've coined that term now. Nobody can take it! 😂
I mentioned it loosely on the IH Podcast I did recently, this is my attempt at trying to clarify what it means.
What does it mean?
You are creating a show for others - you, as a founder, are not the show. The puppets (people, supporters, staff) and the customers are.
You have great ideas - but you need to live them through the puppets, or accept that they won't happen. It will probably take longer to gain traction, but that's ok, as you remember it's not about you as a founder.
You pay close attention - so that you can connect the dots - between your vision, your ideas and all the people that can support you.
The search for puppets - you constantly need to look for the puppets (people) that will make your customers happy. It's not always easy to find these people, but you look constantly for the sparks and you are willing to work and support them.
You pull the strings - it's all down to you at the end of the day. Nothing would happen without your observations and actions. Sometimes it will seem like you are not doing real work. However, the simple act of observing then deciding which strings to pull is powerful.
You have joy in seeing others flourish - you enjoy the attention the puppets get and the value that the customers get out of it too. Your business would be nothing if they were not fulfilled.
People won't know who you are - as time passes you become an enigma. People have heard of the show you put on, but not necessarily you, the founder. That's ok. It's not about you. They may recognise your name, however as things increasingly grow your name becomes mentioned less. Sometimes you can even mingle in with the crowd without them knowing who you are.
This is version 0.1 of The Master Puppeeter Business Building Model. If people like it, then I'll expand my thinking on it. 👍🏽