Are you ready for 2014? Do your people inspire you?

2014 is in full swing, but are your team members playing the right positions to maximize performance and score the win?This is the second message in a 4-part series designed to have you asking the questions and taking the actions that will accelerate growth and free you up to do what really matters in 2014.

If you’d like a quick 20 minute phone call with me to discuss any of these topics, please schedule yourself here:

Here’s to an inspiring, prosperous and fulfilling 2014!

Would you enthusiastically rehire everyone on your team?

Are you wearing too many hats in your business?  That old saw about “if you want something done right, you have to do you yourself,” can appear true all too often.  The problem is, that’s not a scaleable business.  What do you need in order to feel comfortable letting go of some of what’s on your accountability list?  Below are two exercises I do with my clients to help upgrade their people decisions.

You need a great team that’s aligned around producing results.Last week we talked about core values.  Once you’re clear on what they are and expectations have been communicated, you need a way to evaluate your people against them.  Draw a 2×2 matrix like this:

Take each of your direct reports and plot them.  The vertical axis is core values.  Those that are highly aligned with the core values are higher and those less aligned are lower.  Those that are highly productive are to the right and those less productive are to the left.  After plotting, create actions steps for each person.

  • Anyone bottom left, ask yourself: Why is this person here?  Action step: Free up their future and exit them from the company.
  • For people bottom-right, warn them about their sub-par relationship with the core values, get crystal clear with them about what you expect, and check back at the appropriate time.  If they haven’t improved, let them go.  While it may seem scary to give up that productivity, trust the rest of your team to rally behind your commitment to the culture and fill the gap.
  • For those top-left, you can either provide them training to their job performance can improve or find them a position that better fits their skills.  Either way can turn a B performer into a A.
  • For those you rate as A already, carefully assess their flight risk.  What can you do to move them further up and to the right?  What is their development plan?  How can you keep them happy to prevent losing them to a competitor?

Now, take off some hats

Get clear on which hats you’re wearing.  Make a list of the key accountabilities in your company (or use this worksheet) (head of company, marketing, sales, operations, etc).  Next to each accountability, write the name or names of the people accountable.  As a test for alignment, ask your executives to do this as well.  You may be surprised about how differently people see things.  In addition to misalignment, other red flags for you as the CEO are your name in too many boxes, any boxes without a name, and any boxes with two or more names.  Talk this over with your team.  What changes can you make to get more leverage from your efforts?  You’ll want to fully leverage your team members’ efforts as well, my primary concern is you as the entrepreneur at this stage.  Who do you already have on your team that can take on more responsibility?  What’s the next key hire you need to prepare for (you may need to fill a gap right now, or you may be projecting out 6-12 months before that hire – either way, get clear on which position is next)?

Read more: Scaling Up the Organization (Chart!)

Next week: Does everyone know what’s important?  Are you sure?

The Purpose Podcast

I’ve broadcast 24 episodes of the Purpose Podcast where we explore the power unleashed by entrepreneurs clear on their purpose. How does that impact day to day action? Are you clear on your purpose? Take a listen and send me your thoughts. If you like the show, please subscribe in iTunesStitcher or wherever you get your podcasts.  Also, if you’d like to be a guest on an upcoming show, let me know.


I free up entrepreneurs for greater impact. Day to day demands of your growing business will sap your energy and blunt your effectiveness. Together we can work to reduce demands by up to 80% while moving more quickly in the direction of your purpose.

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