A long time ago, an investor in one of my companies asked me what I thought would be the most important factor for success in my new business. I rattled off: “a great product.” He said “no.” I came back with: “money!” To which he replied, again, “no.” And finally, I said “a kick ass business plan.” His replay was not “no,” but “hell no!” He looked me in the eye and said that the most important business decision I would ever make is who I hire.
His reasoning was that the best product, greatest idea, or deepest pockets wouldn’t guarantee success if there was a second rate management team running things. They would succeed in making it fail.
Can The Right People Really Make All The Difference?
However, he was convinced that a company with limited capital, or a less-than-stellar product, or even an amateur business plan would likely succeed if the management team was first class. They would figure out a way to make it all work.
His words haunt me to this very day as I see his theory validated over and over again. I have seen second rate management teams hold back what should be a greatly successful company, and conversely, I have seen great management teams overcome setback after setback.
Look around at your management team. Are they world class? Or are they second rate? Are they the weak link that’s holding you back? Sometimes the members of your management team were fine when the company was smaller or less complex, but not everyone grows with the company. And not every new hire is up to the task.
If you know that you have weak people on board who are holding your company back, you owe it to yourself and the other employees to make these individuals available to the industry. Let them find a place where they can contribute and prosper. Just make sure it’s not your company. You need to surround yourself with “A” players or you are setting yourself up to fail.