So, I was browsing the Inc 500 tonight and noticed that there were three specific companies on the list last year that failed to make it this year and it got me thinking… what makes an Inc. 500 company? Sure, there’s the obvious ones, companies with huge margins and a rockstar marketing and sales force, companies who innovate like crazy, companies who solve the specific needs of a very specific niche, etc.
What else? Well, the people do. Your front line employees, your middle management, many of your upper management, etc. Not just people though, people who are bought into the company mission, vision, values, and goals. People who feel respected each and every day. People who are driven by crazy success. People who are given credit for the hard work they do each and every day. People who trust in company leaders to make the right decisions and do the right thing, every time and in every situation. People who aren’t scared of the owner or individuals on the executive team and their next asinine, dictating moves. And the list can go on and on.
I’ve been reading Good to Great and it is sad what one person can do to a company. In as little as a few years, one arrogant, egotistical person can corrupt an organization and bring it to its knees. Honestly, reading this book and pondering after reading through each company on the Inc. 500 list this year makes me want to be a different kind of leader with my new company. It makes me want to work harder each and every day to develop our people and to give them credit for their work and their successes. It makes me want to lose myself and not worry what everyone outside of the organization thinks of me, as long as our people trust and believe in the direction we are taking things.
I’ll tell you one thing, I’m excited for the coming years and I’m extremely excited to see where our people take our company.