What makes an architectural firm successful? Is it high design? Loyal clients?
Sure a favorable economy helps—but the fact remains the single greatest contributing factor to a company’s long-term success is the talent of its employees—always has been and always will.
Value-producing employees can foster growth in an organization, solve problems, develop long-lasting relationships with key and new stakeholders and overall help the company to run more smoothly in both good times and bad.
For years, world-class corporations like GE, Novartis, and Procter & Gamble have been attributing their success to the ability to identify and foster talent. By involving senior leaders in the selection and cultivation of talented employees, these organizations have been able to stay one step ahead of the competition, proving that talent, above all else, is the driving force of a successful company.
You may think, “Sure, finding and developing the best of the best is important for large organizations like GE, but thin-margined architectural firms don’t have the time and resources to make talent a top priority.” Wrong!
In reality, you can’t afford not to. As Bill Conaty and Ram Charan say in their book, The Talent Masters, “Find the best people … The numbers will follow.”
By following their advice, here are just a few of the many benefits you can expect to see:
1.Improved success rate in new business pursuits—With more firms competing for fewer projects, architectural firms need to differentiate their services more than ever. Often that differentiation is within the body of work of the people that will be responsible for the project.
2.Winning is contagious—Individuals that bring value and make strong impacts affect the psyche of the organization. When the needle starts to move in a positive direction, others take notice. Performance and job satisfaction improves for the entire organization.
3.Others are set free to bring value—High impact individuals free up the time of others who bring value to the organization. Oversight, uncertainty, and micromanagement cause others to be less creative, less productive, and less able to help the organization move forward.
We have consistently heard from our clients that initially survived and are now thriving that they stuck to the basics, continued to market, focused on service, solved problems—but, most importantly, they remained laser-focused on the importance of the talent of their people.