22 Jun Great Team, Great Culture… Being Thankful
This past week was a huge one in the development and launching of our company’s home services business – final development and tweaks happening on the ERP side, critical vendors talking and integrating with each other, go-to-market materials and collateral being finalized. I had previously rallied the troops the week before to prep them for what I was calling “hell week” and “white knuckle time” as we prep to go from start-up to all systems live. Heck, we had our Emmy award-winning producer and other VIP staff from New York in town and we were installing our first customers, whom are actually part of the 20 free giveaway systems that we mentioned back in April (see pictures)…
And then tragedy strikes…
I had an unexpected family emergency strike my family that caused me to have to leave our headquarters here in Plano, TX and spend about 7 days straight in my hometown of Houston. Like most entrepreneurs, there is a good degree of “control-freak” inside of me and, of course, nurturing a launch requires over-attention… but man, thank God for our internal team members and committed vendors who pulled together to make sure everything went as smoothly as possible.
From a culture perspective, I like to train, teach and stress to all team members the importance of intrapreneurship at these early stages. In my view, every team member at this early stage is considered management, an owner, and should be incentivized accordingly. Therefore, everyone should have P&L responsibility, every team member should understand and have a genuine conviction about the organization’s Vision, Strategy, Mission and business objectives. The magic that occurs with this sort of spirit is threefold:
1) Accountability is no longer awkward meetings in an HR office or figuring out demarcation points on a org-chart – instead, there are no egos, there is only mission;
2) It ceases from feeling like a chore or a job; instead, there is intuitiveness, appropriate risk-taking and team members taking ownership instead of passing blame; and
3) The culture weeds out weak, disingenuous or disinterested team members and even vendors for that matter.
I am thankful because it seems to me that while culture is the least reproducible facet of a company, it is very much a difference-maker. Furthermore, you can’t fake it and you can’t really engineer it either – great culture sort of just happens… you can pray for it, do your best and hope the gods of capitalism and leadership smile on you. It’s also sort of like humility, when you realize you have it – you risk losing it.
So for now, let me just declare that I am thankful for our team. From the bottom of my heart, thank you, Grant, David, Jeff, Gaston, Byron, Kenny, Bobby, DJ… and also to those who must remain unnamed, thank you; I am grateful.
Steward of the CHRON Vision