The Week in Review #24: Forgetting Super Chickens at Work

As entrepreneurs, a large majority of us aspire to be superstars. It starts when we enter school and the teacher gives out stars to the best students. The cycle repeats itself endlessly as we move up the ladder. In our quest to reach the top, collateral damage is a necessary evil. We delude ourselves into thinking that this is the only way to reach the success we desire. However nothing could be further from the truth. These isolated examples of success cloak the larger picture. Research has shown, superstar status achieved at all cost is transient in nature. It is only when we focus on bringing out the best in others, is when we find the best in ourselves. This advice is contrarian to most that is given to ambitious entrepreneurs and individuals.

This week’s topic is around a brilliant Ted talk I watched this week by Margaret Heffernan. She shares her research behind what makes the best teams and companies. On the surface it would seem that having a team of all-stars is the best way to have a strong team. However the research suggests otherwise. She found that teams that had a high degree of empathy towards one another, far out performed those with a focus on individual stars. These teams had stronger communication and were far more likely to come up with innovative solutions.

As the world becomes smaller, the need for collaboration is key to our success. We need to change our focus of solely wanting to become superstars. By realizing everybody has value, we unlock the energy and momentum needed to achieve the extraordinary.

Why it’s time to forget the pecking order at work (Video) This week’s top pick is a Ted video on how to create high performing teams. The speaker shares great insights with the use of vivid examples and stories. She shares the top three things that the best teams have in common and how we can build similar teams ourselves.

Good Work Isn’t Enough This article follows a similar theme to the highlighted video. Doing good work without having the right attitude is not sustainable. The best opportunities go to people who have great attitudes. This all comes down to how they work with others and their own disposition.

Why Successful People Focus on the Bottom End of the Funnel This article builds on the theme of doing good work. It is more tactical in nature and discusses specific strategies to achieve excellence. It all boils down to being proactive, starting with an end in mind and putting the first things first.

Isn’t LeBron Amazing? This article shows the flip side of the argument being discussed this week. Lebron James is one of the most valuable sports players in the world. His impact on joining a particular team is massive. To the degree that the success or failure is completely dependent on his shoulders. This extreme example shows that hiring a superstar on your team has a major impact. However, there are several trade offs when you become overly reliant on a single person.

Overpriced Seth Godin talks about the value of assets in this article. We can apply a similar analogy to talent as well. Scouts are used in sports to look for the best undiscovered talent. All these teams make bets on people and their potential. Once a player’s worth has been validated, the market value adjusts itself.

Talent Hunt: Lessons learned about finding the right people This article breaks down 6 strategies you can use in finding talent for your business. The tactics shared in this post differ from the usual advice of finding talent. Recruiting top talent for your business is critical to your success. We have to do everything we can to ensure we keep our pipeline full.

Recruiting – The 3rd Crucial Startup Skill Wrapping up this week is one of the most comprehensive reads of recruiting. David Skok’s blog is a goldmine for information on running a startup. This post provides a complete overview of a recruitment process that every company should build. This is a must read for any business owner.

Have a great week ahead!