We have all heard it said that people are the most important asset your business has. In fact, it is said so much that now we have become somewhat numb to it!
Do we really believe this? Are people truly the key to your organization’s success? What about innovation or leadership or cashflow or customers?
According to Tom Peters in The Excellence Dividend there are seven steps to sustaining success. These seven steps start with taking care of your employees. If you can take care of them and treat them with excellence, they will address all the other components of an excellent business!
This week’s book summary is Principles by Ray Dalio.
Dalio, founder of Bridgewater Associates, the fifth most important private company in the United States (according to Forbes), does a stellar job in laying out his Personal History (for context), Life Principles, and Work Principles. I highly recommend this book to all business leaders. It is full of great business advice, leadership advice, personal advice, and practical application.
My takeaway from this book are the 16 Work Principles that Dalio describes in detail in the book (listed below for your reference):
Over the last seven weeks, I introduced my Ebook 12 Steps to Business Transformation and I defined the first 7 of the 12 transformational steps. This week we are going to talk about the Operations Engine.
Defining your Operations Engine is step 8 in my new Ebook “12 Steps to Business Transformation.”
The Operations Engine is the power plant or dynamo of your business! This is where your products and services are created and produced. It is where all your operating processes and procedures live. It includes everything from recruiting to facility management, cash flow to business systems, products and services production to supply chain management.
It is the unique combination of these hundreds or thousands of components that defines your Operations Engine, what it produces and how efficiently it runs. So, basically, your Operations Engine will make or break your business.
Most of our businesses are run by systems that we have put into place to ensure consistent delivery of products and services. Sometimes these systems are automated and sometimes the systems are manual. However, in every case, these systems are set up, maintained and operated by our people. So, our businesses are run by systems but our people run the systems.
A few years ago I was attending a monthly meeting of The Executive Committee in Calgary and we were discussing some typical business issues that members of the group were facing. We were extremely focused on fixing the business system side of things and one of the group made this statement and it struck everyone as profound.
“our businesses are run by systems but our people run the systems“