Turning Your Employees Into Owners
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In January, I shared with you the presentation by Eliot Frick titled Geese from Bottles, Saving Business by Making It More Human.  The conversation about future business management practices adapting to the needs of the changing market, the ways we communicate and our work environment is ongoing.  An outgrowth of the Tedx presentation is the creation of a movement called The Be Human Project.  Their conversations focus on the need for business to learn that organization is about having an organic body, which means fluidity, holism, interdependent agency, non-determinism and creativity.

It is a lot to think about, but whether you are a believer, curiosity seeker or naysayer, learning more about the conversation will help you be ready for the future.

Peter Strople, is a former director with Dell Computer Corp. and Grid Systems Corp.  In 2008, he created “Friends of Peter” and has been called “The Most Connected Man in America”.  Peter was the keynote speaker at The Inaugural Be Human Salon presentation.

To see this incredible conversation, log into the Be Human Project YouTube channel.

Attracting top talent is getting harder and harder.  Last week, I shared tools to help identify key attributes in candidates.  The fact of the matter is exceptional team members are in great demand and to get them, your bus has to be better than the rest.

For starters, the hiring process needs to be personal and reflect the type of communication they would experience when at the firm.  Avoid a faceless electronic communication process.  Each contact point is an opportunity for you to share your bus’ culture.  Use the job posting to help sell the position.  Avoid just the typical narrative of skills. Talk about your “why” as outlined in Simon Sinek’s TED Talk. (Ardent Dec 4, 2013).

Stay in touch.  Not communicating is still communicating.  If you aren’t ready to move forward, be communicative about what is going on.  Even if the bus has a bumpy ride, building trust will serve you well in standing out from the others.

If it is your goal to have a long term working relationship and not a transactional one, the hiring process must reflect the same.

Reflect on your failed hires.  Did you every fire someone because of what was on there resume?  For me they were critical factors not covered on a traditional resume.

Jim Collins in Good to Great said “Get the right people on the bus and put them in the right seat”.  How do you get this intrinsic information?  What if you could quickly learn the following about a perspective candidate?

  • What value will they bring?
  • How will they respond to challenges and problems?
  • What is their ability to manage multiple and changing priorities?
  • What is their decision making process?
  • How will they respond to others?
  • How do they communicate?
  • What is theirmost effective environment for managing and motivating?
  • How will they attack professional development and continuous improvement?
  • What is their natural and adaptive style?

There are effective tools to identify what seat is best for them and help you determine if they belong on the bus.

My favorite example was when we were hiring a full charge bookkeeper.  Our accounting system was unique, so I thought we hit the jackpot when a candidate’s resume showed ten years experience with our system.  Experience and stability was screaming “hire me”.  After completing the assessment I learned that this individual did not like repetitive tasks, and would not do well sitting behind a computer all day.

What was wrong with this picture?  With this new information I was able to ask better questions.  I learned that after being hired for the full charge bookkeeper position, the candidate moved into a start-up training role for new branches.  This involved a fast paced, dynamic environment that was a perfect fit for their style.  While the title was the same, I asked if they felt our bus seat was right for them and we both answered “No”.

The U.S. Department of Labor currently estimates that the average cost of a bad hire can equal 30% of the individual’s first-year potential earnings.  The numbers approach to hiring fast and firing faster is no longer financially viable.

Assessment tools can vary significantly in cost, time, and complexity.  What worked best for our purpose was a 15 minute online questionnaire that would generate an email with the results when completed.  The information became so important to the process, we would not interview a candidate until they had completed the process.

These tools provide the information necessary to make a timely and informed decision.



The historical approach to business leadership has been to tell the team what to do and how to do it.  It my belief that to build the trust required to turn your employees into owners, everyone must understand the why.  Simon Sinek presented his “How Great Leaders Inspire Action” at the TEDEX in September 2009.  This talk hasbeen viewed over 16 million times which is the most watched presentation in the history of TedX.

To see Simon Sinek’s presentation use the below link: