3M President and Chairman Mike Roman mentioned recently that any differentiation 3M has starts with people, and if you’re reading this, you probably agree--having the right people on your team and in the right spot has never been more important as we launch into a New Year that will hopefully see a diminishing pandemic impact.  We mention 3M as an example here because they make the N95 mask that became one of the most sought after products in the world last year, and responding to that demand was a significant challenge for 3M--note that, with more than 10,000 product lines, Roman focuses first on people.

As you assess your organization’s people strength this year, you’ll no doubt think about how to evolve not only your own leadership style--leadership, after all, is a responsibility and not a job--you’ll also think about your team’s individual strengths as well and try to match opportunities to those strengths.

Entrepreneur and author Jim Collins has several key questions that come in handy any time people’s development comes into play, and they serve as a guide to decision-making.  Among them, three stand out in the development of people:

  1. Is the opportunity with this person on the values, will, or skills world?
  2. Has your confidence in this person gone up or down in the past year?
  3. Is this person on the right bus and in the right seat?

People, as always, will be the definers of your organization, and time spent on helping others achieve their potential is one of the best ways to build an enduringly great company.  Happy New Year!