I heard a great phrase the other day, and it’s a very useful reminder of how to cover all the key bases in a business. In any business, especially a small business, you need 3 types of role: the finder, the minder and the grinder.

The finder is the prospector. The finder finds customers, partners and even investors. They are the public face of the company, the chief evangelist.

The minder minds the company. The minder looks after the cash. Their responsibility is finance, legals, compliance, looking after the company and making sure it’s meeting its various obligations.

The grinder is the one who delivers. They are operational, with their shoulder to the wheel and on the factory floor – literally or metaphorically. They execute what has been promised by the finder and charged for by the minder.

All of these roles are important, and you need each role working in synergy, recognising each other’s strengths and skills, rather than complaining that they do all the work while the others sit around.

In a sole tradership, of course, one person needs to fulfil all 3 roles, or else contract out some of the other roles profitably or productively. In a partnership you see the 3 roles being divided across the two people. Sometimes they take one role each and share the other. As any business scales it really needs one person dedicated to each role, eventually building to a team for each function.