Think Right, (Not Good).
Several of our Leadership Groups have recently attended a “Talent Management Masterclass” where the emphasis has been on getting the top performers in a business to achieve even more, rather than the traditional focus of working on those who miss their goals and targets and attempting to get them to step up.
The key point was to have the RIGHT people in each position rather than GOOD people – there is a difference.
As Jim Collins put it, “Good is the enemy of Great” and the trouble with accepting GOOD is often it’s just one step back to mediocrity. Let me share an example of this, (although I’ll change the individual’s name to protect his identity).
When my business was primarily a marketing agency we had 70 people of which about half were involved in client management. Their principle role was to take briefs and communicate these to the creative teams and then to manage the production of the outputs, be they advertisements, websites, brochures or PR campaigns.
One of our Account Managers I can now see fell into the category of “GOOD”. Paul was very popular, the clients loved his positivity, humour and friendly approach. Colleagues liked his sense of fun and he always raised the ‘mood barometer’ when returning to the office or in a meeting.
I can imagine some of you thinking, “Paul sounds great” but he wasn’t. He didn’t challenge the clients’ briefs. He didn’t push the creatives to do even better work. He was too accepting of the first quotes from suppliers. Paul was very nice, (which we then interpreted as GOOD), but he wasn’t RIGHT.
We had other Account Managers and Directors who weren’t as smiley, could be a bit grumpy on occasions when things weren’t going as they should be and perhaps were often too demanding of their teams but they were the RIGHT people, their delivery was much better and for all involved, client, team and the agency.
I know I’ve been guilty in the past of employing too many people who I like and not enough of those who I didn’t connect with on a personal level but actually were the RIGHT ones for particular roles – how about you?
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