A successful company is achieved through a successful team of workers. When you really think about it, building a team for your company is a lot like building a sports team. You know what’s the most fun part? You get to be the General Manager!
Unless your business is like the New York Yankees and you can afford to throw money at the industry’s top performers, you’ll have to build your team methodically. That starts with letting go of the wrong people and hiring the right ones.
Turning a good team into a championship one, or a good company into a successful company isn’t an exact science. Even so, there are some fundamentals that nearly all successful companies use.
The Rookies as the Foundation of a Successful Company
To make your company successful you need a good mix of young, energetic talent alongside your established veterans. In sports, the rookies make the hustle plays and bring tons of enthusiasm to the locker room.
The same is true for a sports team as-is for an office. The young employees that you bring in will flood the environment with positivity and eagerness. They’ll also prove very useful in providing insight into youth markets and emerging technologies. Of course, rookies are a little cheaper too, but, as the saying goes, you get what you pay for.
New vs Experienced
Filling your metaphorical ‘roster’ with cheap, young talent will make for an environment that is high on fun but low on experience. That’s why teams sprinkle in a few established vets here and there. Of course, they do cost more, but their experience and proven skills often prove invaluable when needed most.
The veterans provide the guidance and a ‘been there, done that’ attitude that provides a kind of steadiness that is invaluable come crunch time.
The Tough Choices
Sometimes, to have a successful company, you have to make tough choices. Much like a losing team, when your company is struggling it’s time for management to take a good, hard look at the players’ who might not quite be holding their weight.
Many General Managers in sports have had to make the tough choice of getting rid of underperforming veterans or fan favorites past their prime. It’s never a popular decision, nor is it an easy one, but it’s almost always necessary.
At a fast-growing company, these legacy employees can quickly fall behind the curve and become obsolete. They then become a burden that weighs down on a successful company. Why are you keeping them around? Like rebuilding teams, adding new, young people provides you with a fresh perspective and new ideas!
What To Look for In Your New Players
Team managers and scouts always look for ‘team players’ when rebuilding their roster. This means that they look for selfless players that will do the little things and focus on winning rather than their own personal success—which is becoming increasingly rare these days.
To build a successful company you need to look for these same traits when you are hiring. Applicants that have changed companies multiple times in an unending quest for a better title will likely just use your company as another stepping stone. They’ll spend their time looking out for themselves rather than collaborating with their colleagues.
“A lack of community makes way for a cut-throat work environment which is very harmful to productivity over time. When there is a sense of community in the workplace it benefits everyone.” – Cameron Herold
Even once you do put your winning team together, for your company to be successful you’ll still need a bit of luck, a lot of courage, and a whole bunch of hard work. No one ever said winning was easy…
If you have questions or would like more information, I’d be happy to help. Please send an email, and my team will get in touch with you!
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in September 2014 and has been edited for accuracy and comprehensiveness.