PART II: Nurturing an All-Star
So you land the winner. Now what? Now you need a process through which you can nurture and develop that all-star. What ideas should you consider as you craft the overall plan?
Don’t shut your people in a box.
You absolutely must train new hires consistently, well and in a way that sets them up for success. But once they’ve got the hang of the core deliverables, you mustn’t shove new talent into a little box and allow them to only excel at the short list of things for which you’ve hired them. Great, successful companies allow their people to raise their hands, run with new ideas and use their non-mandatory talents to the massive benefit of the organization.
Assume employees are going to do right, and give them a chance to do so.
Ever work in an organization whose leaders assumed that the employees were bound to screw up, and they managed accordingly? It can be disastrous, souring the culture and impeding productivity and growth. Great leaders not only assume their people will do right; they give them a chance to do so. You must cultivate an environment, from the top down, that gives everyone the chance to do it right, and ample opportunity to make mistakes and learn from them.
Give everyone a M-A-P.
In Guy Kawasaki’s book Enchantment, he outlines how important it is to not only enchant customers, but employees as well. The most powerful way to do so, he says, is to provide a M-A-P. The “M” stands for mastery — give your people a means to master skills. “A” is autonomy. This one’s obvious, and something we just referenced above. Great talent thrives on autonomy, and people perform best when given the space to excel. And, last, “P,” or purpose. While money and perks are what most assume best motivate employees, studies have proven that mastery, autonomy and a sense of purpose are the best way to motivate (and enchant) employees.
While finding, attracting, and retaining exceptional people can feel formidable to even the most astute business owners, developing and then following thoughtful, consistent talent management processes can dramatically increase the odds that your team abounds with brilliant, high-performing A-players.