Revenue is growing and as you look out over the next few quarters you have a full pipeline. All things point to a bright future. The question that circulates around your leadership table is, “Is it time to grow our staff to handle this new workload?”
This is the tightrope walk all leaders run into. How to grow staff levels properly to deliver excellent service without killing your P&L. One of the questions that runs through leader’s minds is which comes first, perfect processes or top talent.
Without seeming to wimp out, I think it is both at the same time.
Hiring talent without processes in place seems crazy. People doing what they think is right or what makes them shine may not be aligned with what your company is looking to deliver.
On the flip side waiting to hire talent until ever process is perfected is also not a great strategy. What you think works on paper may change or adapt as you put things into motion. You may find that your talent brings out flaws in your strategy. Maybe they bring ideas from previous employment that you can leverage.
Let’s break down each of these ingredients for successful growth.
Some companies believe that success comes from having a team filled with superstars from top to bottom. They wrongly believe that if everyone is great, success will be easily achieved. This mistake in hiring can be seen throughout sports, where the team of strategically chosen role players will defeat the team of superstars.
I believe you need top performers to set the standard for your team but focusing on specific skills or talents that will aid your entire team will provide more success in the long run. Do you target your hiring in the same manner?
Having a well designed process for people to follow is important. It keeps everyone on task.
Process does not hinder talent it allows employees to be more free. As an actor I always knew where to go onstage and I knew my lines. The more comfortable I was with these tools the freer I was to listen and react to my fellow actors. If I had to worry what the other person was doing, it would lead to chaos. Confidence in your processes will create success for your team.
A word of caution: Your top performers may chafe at following a process too closely. Many times top performers cannot explain how they are achieving success. As a leader you have to get them to embrace the process but also sit with them to give them permission to adjust the process to aid them in their success, within acceptable guidelines both sides agree on.
Remember that you can’t double your revenue leaning on one or two or three top people but creating a process for the whole team to follow will lead to future success.
Finally, before making any drastic changes I would first look at what you’re currently doing and then see if your people are executing the current process correctly.
You may have a great process but you’re just not executing on it and so that’s why your results are falling short. You may not need to focus on other things first: how you train your employees, accountability standards or who you having a position to lead.
Growing staff to meet production levels can be tricky but if you remain balanced, you won’t fall off the tightrope.
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