Many of you will have read Jim Collins’ book ‘Good to Great’. You will recall the “bus analogy” in which Jim argues that before you talk about where you are going you need to consider who you are taking with you. Do you have the right people on the bus? Are they in the right seats? and should a few actually depart the bus before the journey begins?
As an HR Professional, I know how important this is, and would even argue that without getting your bus sorted first, it is unlikely that you are going to be able to achieve your vision for your business let alone its true potential. And it is important to keep in mind that this is not only the right employees, it is also the right partners.
However as a business owner, I know how difficult this can actually be. When things are going well, it is easy to ignore the tiny rattle, or the crumbs starting to appear on the seats – it’s not always an easy thing to accept that some people (and partners) are no longer a good fit (or perhaps, never really were).
My recommendation for you is to look at your organisation as the two key teams of resources you need. You need two teams, only two teams, both with your strategy at the forefront of their minds but each with different expectations. Team 1 are those that are on your payroll, team 2 are those that are not.
Take a piece of paper and draw the following – rate how well your teams are currently going against an axis of current performance versus potential. What do you notice?
At each stage of the business life cycle, you need a different mix in both teams. Working with a trusted partner to help you determine the right mix is key to your ongoing success. To take a ‘gloves off’ look at what you currently have internally and how well your key advisors are supporting your business is just smart business practice – we do it every year, minimum, and every year there are some changes. What I needed (and could afford) when we got started in my co-founders dining room to fast-forward, 8 years, over 30 employees and 100’s of clients are vastly different – some of my key partners have remained because they could evolve and expand with me, however, some have not.
Like Albert Einstein once said “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over but expecting a different result”. If you like the result, potentially change nothing, if you don’t like the result, evaluate why you are getting it.