People is the Business

By: Peter Klinge, Jr. Growth Executive

People is the business. Without people there is no developed economic society. People are what create, innovate, and drive business.

Sounds pretty simple, perhaps to many not particularly interesting.

This article presents three ideas or principles you can use as considerations for your organization. Regardless of company size or stage, whether a start up with a handful of employees or a Fortune 100 company the principles and uses are similar.

  • Purpose
  • Diversity of thought and perspective
  • Compensation and wealth creation

The premise for these three principles is that in an age where technology seems to change our lives at a constantly accelerating pace the people element is too often set aside. Replaced by apps, smart phones, algorithms, and robots productivity versus employee engagement has become the most important metric. How people create or engage their customers is deemphasized.

How often are we pushed insistently by companies to use virtual assistance, chats, or site FAQs to resolve problems instead of speaking to someone live? In many cases a phone number is no longer listed for customer support.

Organization, culture, and values are subordinated into talk of SaaS and arcane tech terms.

Modern approaches to organizational development necessitate a different way of thinking about how we work, communicate, and collaborate. Technology should facilitate, not supplant human team interaction, and therefore be a catalyst for increasing contact and the sharing of ideas.

Here is a greater explanation of the principles to help you develop your people and organization:

Purpose: why does your business exist, for its employees/their families, and various stakeholders? Without purpose there is a lack of meaning to why people show up to the office or log on to remote access.

Diversity of thought and perspective: Welcome ideas, encourage persuasive communication through dialogue. A genuine openness to varying perspectives is essential to consistently delivering on great ideas of purpose. Today there’s over reliance on identity politics as a means for recruiting “diversity”. Any leader of a company trying to develop the best ideas from their team to benefit customers and society understands that it’s diversity of thought that matters equally if not more important than an identity. Such thinking around gender, race, creed, color, religion can lead to incorrect assumptions and unintended biases

Compensation and wealth creation:  Employers should relate the first 2 points Purpose and Diversity as a means to enhance employee engagement and replace the emphasis on productivity. Increased engagement will yield better outcomes: revenue, profitability , customer satisfaction, as well as productivity. But another should be emphasized and that is the opportunity for increased wealth for employees and positive contributions to families, communities, and societies as a whole. Measure outcomes from engagement as an opportunity to increase pay and profit participation.

Further the increases and advancement of employee compensations and wealth through  talent development of  people in their employ to grow the economic opportunity of individuals. Productivity can’t be simply measured in terms of greater output. But should also be in wage growth commensurate with profitability. If it means shifting work and training programs to more knowledge based skills then employers should develop such training ideas to benefit their people. Our society and economy cannot sustain itself with out consumers who can pay for goods and services IF wages and profitability remain imbalanced over long periods.

Employers and educators should collaborate to stimulate the love of learning and a desire for people to always want to learn. To acquire new knowledge, skills, ways to adapt.

An example of these principles applied is represented in a company I recently visited. You may have seen this posted on LinkedIn in February, 2018. I thought sharing my observations of that visit in the context of the above is a helpful illustration to you business owners and leaders.

People…. remember great business is about PEOPLE…  I visited a promising software (SaaS) company in Park City, UT. Yes… I know business and a ski resort town seem a contradiction…. But wait …. Ana and Bassam Salem founded what promises to be a great company (if that’s what the team wants) ….

AtlasRTX I expected our conversation to be about business and financial models, something about algorithms, etc. etc. Indeed in my 2 hours there we never talked about the product. We talked about PEOPLE. In the whole of my time there I met the entire 8+ person team and we just talked about all kind of things.

They were genuinely interested in the idea that we get to know each other; backgrounds, perspectives, life experiences. I found this so refreshing…

It impressed upon me the importance that with all the tech we have and talk about in business and life our purpose and potential is essentially about PEOPLE. The Atlas RTX team impressed upon me the thought that this group could make any business work that they collectively set their mind to… I hope the reality of my impression is fulfilled. Now I want to visit again to talk about what they actually do and how they do it 🙂

About Peter Klinge, Jr.  Peter is a growth executive: roles as revenue executive, advisor to owners and boards, and project coach committed to helping small to mid size companies sort out their growth plans and ability to execute.


This entry was posted in CEO and C-suite, Client Case Studies, communications, Critical Thinking, Interpersonal, Management Leadership, Team Organizational Development, Technology, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to People is the Business

  1. Erick Allen says:

    Fantastic article Peter! Very timely for me.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *