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So far in our strategic planning model we have talked about patrons, products, and promotion.  What about the people, your employees?  Who will support all your clients(finance, admin, etc.)?  No strategy can get very far without considering the human element.

When businesses think about the people they have or want, they usually think in terms of technical skills.  For example, “Bob really understands the product”, or “We need someone who is good with numbers”, or “We need someone who is a good salesperson”.  All of those things may be true.

But think in broader terms.  As the world continues to change faster and faster, businesses are forced to change with it.  Those who don’t, won’t be around for long.  Because of this, businesses need to think as much in terms of ability to change as they do “traditional” technical knowledge, which can be taught and learned.  Is someone flexible and willing to try new things?  Or does someone refuse to leave their comfort zone? 

Think about technical skills in non-traditional terms.  Much of what has “always worked” in sales and marketing is rapidly becoming irrelevant.  Consumers have changed, and will continue to do so.  Having people with lots of experience is an advantage – as long as they’re willing to try new things.  Remember, “The one who adapts his policy to the times prospers, and likewise the one whose policy clashes with the demands of the times does not” (Machiavelli).

What kind of people do you have NOW?  Do they not only adapt to change, but seek it out?  Are there gaps between the NOW and the WHERE described above?  Should you be looking for some additional help?  Or is it simply a matter of training and developing the staff you have?  Robert Crandall (American Airlines) said, “You put together the best team that you can with the players you’ve got, and replace those who aren’t good enough.”  How good can your team be?

Understanding the gaps between where you are NOW and WHERE you want to be means you can work on bridging those gaps.  More action!

talent, team, develop the right team

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