The most successful companies focus on developing the best team members possible. It is an ongoing process, and includes both continually raising the bar on existing team members and occasionally adding and grooming new team members. Businesses that become complacent and satisfied with their performance eventually lose to more innovative, aggressive competitors. Do you have key positions in your company that you know should be filled by more capable players? As the leader, this is one of your most important — and probably most difficult — responsibilities.
Successful owners/executives realize they need to spend an equal amount of time developing their associates and winning and retaining customers. While it is a fact that without customers you have no business, it is also true that without knowledgeable, well-trained, and motivated associates you cannot keep good customers. We have observed that some executives focus solely on customers — and have noted that their businesses suffer in the long run. Are you appropriately focused on recruiting, training, and retaining your associates?
Words are important. Today, everything seems to have a fancy label — which was probably created by some well-intended consultant and then used, overused, and abused by everyone. But think about it: Would you like to be referred to as an asset, human capital, or “my guy”? Or would you prefer to be thought of as a really important team member, an invaluable player, or a key associate? How do you refer to your associates?