Have you heard of the expression “Get the right people in the right seats?” Do you know what it really means? Do you know how to let this adage guide your leadership decisions? Do you consciously think about it as you build your Executive Team or hire someone new? You should because it is a powerful concept that helps businesses operate at their full potential for faster growth.
Getting the right people in the right seats is a simple yet often ignored concept. Every company is made up of a team of people talented in different areas with different skill sets. If your people aren’t performing the tasks needed for their role then something is out of alignment and must be addressed immediately. There is no time to hope things will fix themselves. Being out of alignment means your business is not healthy and you can’t gain traction, two terms we use to assess whether a business is operating to its full potential. But how do you get the right people in the right seats?
First, let’s break the phrase down.
The right person is one who embodies the company’s core values. They are the living, breathing personification of what the company believes, how it behaves, and the value it wants to deliver. It helps you determine who the right people are for YOUR business. Someone perfect for your business may not be perfect for another one.
The right seat means that the person has a role in the organization that fits them perfectly. They understand what they are expected to do, they want and embrace the role, and they have the expertise and experience to perform to expectations.
To help my clients operate at peak levels, we focus on the people component of the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS) which is all about getting the right people in the right seats. We use a simple tool called the People Analyzer which helps evaluate the individuals.
After using the People Analyzer, we are usually faced with one of three outcomes.
- RPRS – The Right Person, Right Seat – The person you are evaluating is ideal. This is the desired outcome so you can rest assured the role is in good hands.
- RPWS – The Right Person, Wrong Seat. You may love this person but they can’t perform in the seat they sit in. In this case, you can look elsewhere in the organization to see if another seat or role would fit them better. If not, you may need to help this person move on and out of the company. This is hard, especially when people have been with the company since the beginning or for a number of years, but you can’t have the wrong person in an essential role. The company and ultimately the employee will fail for it.
- WPRS – The Wrong Person, Right Seat. You have an essential role in the company but the wrong person is occupying it. How do you know a person is wrong? They are gifted and talented in their assigned role. The problem is that they don’t embody the core values of the organization. When this happens the person will erode the very fabric of your organization. They don’t fit. They may cause disruption, ill feelings, etc. They simply do not work well with the team. When this happens, it is imperative to replace this individual Don’t drag your feet. Use your core values to back up your discussion with the individual. For example: “One of your core values is “humbly confident” but you have a team member that demonstrates repeatedly that he is the only one that can get the job done. He is unwilling to collaborate to harness the power of team and is unwilling to teach those more junior, referring to them as worthless.”
Your team will thank you and respect you for taking care of the issue. You’ll wonder why you hadn’t done it sooner.
Success comes when a team of talented people come together and each contributes their unique abilities. To learn more about how the EOS system can keep your organization healthy and on track, give me a call at 630.728.4177.
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