By Ron Price
entrepreneur was recently reviewing his own natural talent patterns
as revealed in a comprehensive psychometric tool. He had
exceptional behavioral and motivational energy as well as having one
of the highest empathetic outlook scores ever seen (9.8 out of 10).
What most people wouldn’t give for some of his energy! However, as
with many up and coming entrepreneurs, he was great at getting
things started and extremely frustrated with trying to get things
finished. The young entrepreneur realized that in order to fulfill
his potential, he needed to build a much stronger support team to
execute more effectively on his ideas.
entrepreneur currently owns three different businesses and has
enough ideas to start several more. What is important at this
juncture is building a support team that is different from him—folks
who don’t like to initiate new projects but who will enjoy
implementing, nurturing, and optimizing the ideas that have grown
into businesses already. The question he had (like so many others
do) is: “But how do you do that?” In what may seem too simple to be
considered anything other than obvious, the response is: “Know the
job, know the person, then manage for success.”
the job: What are the primary activities of this job?
Interaction with lots of people? Versatility? Working in a
competitive environment (whether competing against a goal or winning
against competitors)? Frequent change? Maintaining an organized
workplace? What are the activities that make up the majority of
time spent in this job when it is done right?
the primary intrinsic rewards of this job? Of course, everyone
wants a paycheck, but what else does this job reward? Helping other
people? Learning new things? Creating and maintaining order? Or,
is the greatest reward creating lots of money or some other
measureable result? Every job rewards something, so what does this
job reward most?
common sense or good “business judgment” does this job enlist? Does
it depend on someone who focuses on practical results, organizing
things, seeing how things fit together or compare with each other?
Is it asking for someone who thinks deeply and spends most of his or
her time managing concepts, ideas, or strategies? Or, is this job
asking for someone who is an exceptional judge of other people and
who can influence, lead, understand, and develop others?
the person: Using the same road map for understanding the job,
owners/managers should be able to develop a deeper and more
beneficial understanding of the ideal person for the job. What
activities does the ideal candidate enjoy most? Interaction
with others or space and time to work with a singular focus?
Completing routine tasks or lots of irons in the fire?
Troubleshooting or predictable project management? Organizing files
and systems or always moving forward in the midst of chaos? How
does this relate to what the job is asking for?
motivates the candidate? Creating wealth? Helping others?
Learning new things? Working according to a set of principles?
Being in charge and controlling the destiny of others?
common sense, or business judgment, does this person bring to
the job? Is he or she more effective as a thinker? Is he or she
quick at comparing several practical alternatives, understanding how
things work, and adjusting to create the desired results? Or, does
the candidate most effectively understand the needs of others? How
does this relate to what the job is asking for? Is someone being
put in the position that is a natural fit, or are we asking him or
her to come to work and check his natural talent and motivational
inclinations at the door because that is what the job requires?
Manage for success: Once an owner/manager has a crystal clear
picture of the activities, rewards, and evaluative judgment of the
job and understands how the candidate fits or doesn’t fit with that
picture, it is possible to develop a unique new approach to managing
for success. By leveraging those parts of the job that will come
naturally and learning how to navigate the rough spots that don’t
line up, there is a better chance of supervising the work and the
person for greater performance and fulfillment. Who wouldn’t want a
relationship with an employee where all you have to say is, “go do
your thing!” and high performance is the result?
to achieve optimal effectiveness in hiring and management,
entrepreneurs have to accept that not all jobs or all people are the
same. Jobs ask for specific activities, motivations, and judgment.
And people bring unique behavioral preferences, motivational biases,
and evaluative judgment patterns to their jobs. By having a clear
picture of the job and what constitutes superior results, then
having a clear picture of where a person fits with what the job is
asking for, business leaders can begin to “manage to win” instead of
doing what most supervisors end up doing with their employees,
“managing not to lose”.
said that diagnosis is often, “90% of the cure.” As the
entrepreneur realized, he often made hiring decisions feeling like
he was playing roulette. He put an ad in the paper, starting
looking at resumes and hoped the resumes gave him some clue about
whether a person was capable of doing what he wanted. Some
companies will take the extra effort to call references, do some
background checks, and all of this to set the stage for an interview
where the research indicates most interviewers decide in the first
30 seconds whether or not they like the candidate. In better
companies, hiring managers may do a reasonable job of vetting the
resume and validating what the candidate can actually do. However,
great hiring is about developing a deep understanding of what the
candidate is most likely to succeed wildly in doing.
entrepreneurs view hiring, supervising and managing as something
other than primary work—it is a means to an end, almost a necessary
evil, rather than a critical part of fulfilling their
entrepreneurial dreams. They rarely recognize that how they
understand the job and the candidate may be one of the most
important factors in their future success.
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