People problems in companies tend to boil down to one of two things. Wrong people hired, or right people hired, but then not empowered.
We need to both (1) hire the right people to bet on, and; (2) place our bet.
Doing either of those well isn’t easy. But I see so many businesses ruin good work they do in one by not doing the other.
If you find the wrong people and place your bet, you’ll get a bad culture and bad outcomes. (Think tolerating bad behaviour from your “stars”).
If you find the right people and don’t place your bet, you’ll get a frustrated team and will lose good people.
In practice, what does hiring the right people to bet on mean? Starters for 10:
- Don’t hire skills over culture;
- Don’t hire experience over values;
- Don’t reward people who “do the job” well, but undermine your values.
What does placing the bet mean?
- Give your team space and support to do their best work;
- Support and direct – don’t micromanage;
- Delegate, but don’t abrogate;
So make the effort to find good people, then expect and trust them to get on with it. Don’t do one without the other or you’ll blow both.
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