Growing Competent People

Would you like to train strong sales people?  Strong advisers of any kind I suppose.  Could even be professionals.  Assuming you have a reasonable selection process, there are only a few things you need to reinforce.

  • You cannot be a specialist in everything.  Pick an aspect of the business and be very good at that and aware of the problems, opportunities and solutions in others.
  • Know where the other specialists are.  Network.
  • Work very hard at building relationships.  Everyone you meet has a story and can direct you to someone else.  Maybe many someone elses.  Help them when you can.
  • It takes a long time to get very good, but a shorter time to get adequate.  Find a mentor who can help you notice the difference.
  • Amateurs practice until they get it right.  Professionals practice until they cannot get it wrong.  Build your system so excellent is the default condition.
  • You can make a good living working half days and it does not matter which 12 hours you pick.
  • Activity is easy to measure, but action matters.

As to the selection process, you want people with a good work ethic, with integrity, who are disciplined and who do not expect instant gratification.  Ones who can persuade others and who like to help people.

But that is not news.

Trainers need to be patient, creative and demanding of excellence.  They need to know how to delegate and how to measure performance.  They do not accept excuses.

I imagine this will work with children too; minus the selection part.

Don Shaughnessy is a retired partner in an international accounting firm and is presently with The Protectors Group, a large personal insurance, employee benefits and investment agency in Peterborough Ontario. | Twitter @DonShaughnessy | Follow by email at moneyFYI

2 Comments on “Growing Competent People

  1. And Oh yes, find some way to prevent your “finished product” from being romanced away by your contemporaries, who care only for profit.

    • The cynic appears, Why do people want to find fault with perfect theoretical plans?

      If you want to keep these people forever, it is pretty important to have the product shelf and support that they need to deliver what they are in the business of delivering. Also notice that many of the people have an attention span measured in milli-seconds. They should sort out on the discipline factor in recruiting.

      If you have a clear target, there is a chance you can hit it. If you have no clear target, you can end anywhere.

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