Innovation and The Painted Picture

Cameron Herold, former COO of 1-800-Got-Junk, is an author, cameronspeaker and coach who says if you want to drive innovation in your organization, it’s essential that you create a great culture!   The key is caring enough to do so!  It starts with giving your employees a painted picture of the future that inspires them and speaks to their personal visions.  The painted picture is an aligning force for your employees and a magnet for attracting truly excellent people to your organization.  To be effective though, your painted picture should both attract and repel people – attract those you are excited about the vision and repel those who don’t connect with it.

Herold says, find the right people, expel the poor performers and, as Jim Collins said, place the right people in the right seats on the bus.   To get the right people, you have to know what you’re looking for.   He challenged CEOs, business owners, and their key executives at the Vistage Executive Summit in San Francisco by asking if they know what their looking for and if they have a strategy for finding the A players.  Herold said, “A players are not looking for jobs. To find the A players, you have to poach them from other organizations.  Today, you need to hire for attitude and skills, not one or the other.”

As for the poor performers, Herold said that you need to have the courage to set them free.  They are not happy, you are not satisfied with their performance, and your indecision is not only holding your company back, it’s denying these employees the opportunity to go somewhere else – a place where they may be far more successful!

Once you have the right people – people who are truly aligned with what you’re trying to do and where you’re aiming to go, you need to connect with them beyond their job descriptions and daily duties.   It’s not only about knowing their birthday or their kids’ names.  It’s about truly caring about their personal and professional growth.  It’s about understanding what really motivates them.  To do that, ask your employees to make a bucket list.  Use the bucket list to gain insights into what drives them and, and when they do something really great, look at the bucket list and think about what experience you can help them realize.   Every A player is different – treat them that way!

Great culture is a combination of leaders who see it as a priority and employees who feel cared for and have a painted picture they can believe in – a picture with a purpose larger than themselves.   If you want innovation, you need the right people in the rights seats who are passionate about a collective, purposeful vision for the future.   Great culture is great by design.  Start designing.

Category: Innovation

Tags:  , , , , ,

Avatar About the Author: Leo Bottary

Leo J. Bottary is an adjunct professor for two of Seton Hall University's graduate level programs in strategic communication and leadership.  Leo has enjoyed a 25-year career counseling leaders in the areas of strategic comm…

Learn More

  1. Rick DeMarco

    May 22, 2014 at 1:59 pm

    Absolutely loved Cameron’s presentation. Could not agree more on the importance of culture and on the need to hire for both skills and attitude. In fact, I believe that more people fail because of cultural misalignment than because of technical incompetence. Therefore, I respectfully disagree that “A players are not looking for jobs”. One man’s junk is another’s treasure. Often A players are out looking for a job because they did not fit their previous company’s culture, and they can clearly be A players in a different culture. Also in this economy, there are plenty of A players out looking for a job. And finally research indicates that among highly engaged employees, 25% of them are actively looking for another job.

    • jasonroth

      May 27, 2014 at 12:16 pm

      Thanks for the comments Rick!

Leave a Reply

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