America’s Leadership Expert : Best Business Training

Clay Staires: This is Clay Staires, America’s Leadership Expert , and podcast number 59, The Staires Steps. We’re focusing on Staires Step number three today in our podcast, the “who.” As Clay Staires, America’s Leadership Expert , once again, we have put together a path to freedom — we call them the Staires Steps to Freedom — creating a business that runs without you, so you can enjoy your life. Our first step that we’ve talked about here is the “why,” making sure that we understand why, our mission statement, our vision, core focus, core values. This creates purpose as we move forward. Step number two was talking about the “where” and the “when.” It’s creating your goals, your yearly goals, three-year goals, maybe even five-year. Also, breaking those down into quarterly rocks or quarterly anchors, that then allows you to determine, “Okay, this is what we need to accomplish this month, this week, this day.”

So that’s step number two, and then step number three, which is what we’re going to be talking about here in this episode of Clay Staires, America’s Leadership Expert . We’re talking about the “who.” This is where we have your organizational chart, or the … What I call the responsibility chart, or the accountability chart, as Gino Wickman talks about in the book Traction. But it’s making sure that we get the right people in the right seat. This is right out of the book Good to Great, making sure we have the right people in the right seat. Also, having an identified, clear accountability chart allows us to hold people accountable. Now we know what people are doing, what your specific job is, and what this does is it creates confidence.

So we have the “why,” step number one, creates purpose; the “where” and “when” creates energy and motion; and step number three actually creates confidence, knowing, “This is my job, this is what I’m responsible for.” So often, the mistake that we make with our organizational chart … And, as Clay Staires, America’s Leadership Expert , I spend so much time talking to business owners and business managers that when I ask them if they could … You know, “Please show me your organizational chart,” what they do 100% of the time is identify … If they’ve got 10 people in their company, they have 10 boxes on their organizational chart. If they have three people, then they have three boxes on their organizational chart, and so on.

What they are doing when they put together their org chart is they are putting it together through the lens of people. So what I want to encourage you to do, and what we do with Clay Staires, America’s Leadership Expert , in training our entrepreneurs and business leaders, is how to put together your organizational chart based upon the responsibilities that are in your company on a daily basis: the responsibilities, the things that need to get done in your organization. So once again, we’re deciding here, in our accountability chart, who will do what.

Again, so many times, the problem is, is that when we look and design our organization chart based upon the number of people, what happens is we just start tossing things into a specific box. If I’ve only got five people, and I have five boxes on my org chart, then what happens is I just begin to toss things into each box, and those boxes get bigger and bigger and bigger. We’re sitting in a meeting, and I go, “Okay, who can do this?” “Well, I can do this.” “It’s not really part of your job description, it’s not really part of why I hired you, but hey, we have a situation right now that needs to get taken care of. Who at the table is going to do it?” And we just take a volunteer. Or, what happens is, “Well, I’ve done the last three.” “Okay, Bob, then it’s your turn.” And it’s just randomly assigned to people.

It really has no connection to the other jobs that they are doing, the other responsibilities that they have. It doesn’t take that into context. Also, it really doesn’t take into consideration that person’s skill level, their personality level, what they are properly suited to do. It’s just “We have something to do, I need someone to do it.” So really, what it is is just somebody is willing to say, “I will do it,” which is great, but unfortunately, what happens is, before long, so many things get put into a particular box that it becomes very, very overwhelming and confusing.

And then when things aren’t getting done, if … Oh, this is the beauty. If there are 10 things in one person’s box, and if they are not doing two of them very well, then if we’re not careful as a leader, we will evaluate them based on the two things they are not doing well, rather than the eight that they are doing well, and we can consider firing this person because they aren’t doing two things well, when they are doing eight things really well. And because I don’t have 10 different boxes, I just have one, then I’m thinking about eliminating the employee, as opposed to just getting them out of those two boxes. If I have their responsibilities broken into … Or if I have their job description broken into responsibilities, then I can simply just move them out of a particular box, and not have to fire the employee.

So, once again, I’ve got seven different tips I want to do here, seven different steps as we design and put together your responsibility chart. Number one, who is going to do what? So we have to identify these responsibilities, so how will we identify the responsibilities? As Clay Staires, America’s Leadership Expert , what we advise, number one, is to identify the levels of responsibility, and these levels, I always begin … I have four different levels in every organization. There are the leaders. The leaders are the ones that have the vision, the leaders are the ones that have the big picture, the leaders are the ones that are able to see into the future.

Then the next level down is the managers. The managers are the ones that are going to take the vision, take the bigger picture, and break it down into smaller pictures, smaller lists of tasks that can then be assigned to the workers. So there can be different levels of managers; I do have two different levels of managers that I encourage to have on an organizational chart. The upper-level manager, senior managers, these are managers that are managing managers. The mid-level managers are the managers that are actually managing workers.

And then, from the management level, the next level down, these are, like, the trainers, the developers, the team-builders. These are workers that have set themselves apart from the status quo. They are workers that go a little bit beyond. They are workers that have shown the ability to gather people. They’ve shown that, “Hey, I’m a worker, but I am actually able to have influence with other workers.” And then … These may be … This level may be your lead technician, or your shift lead. They’re not necessarily a manager yet, but they are like a leader of a specific small thing, specific department or something. And then, finally, our fourth level is the worker level, and these are the people that are actually doing the minutiae, they’re doing the day-to-day task of getting things done in the organization.

So first of all, we want to be sure to identify these levels. What I’ve found so many times, as Clay Staires, America’s Leadership Expert , is that so many times, there are leaders, visionaries, company owners, CEOs, and then what happens is they are completely missing the management and the team-builder levels. So it’s like the leader or the CEO, and the next level down is all the workers, and so the leader, the CEO, feels so overwhelmed, they feel like they have to do everything. They feel like they have to look over everyone’s shoulder, and they’re very frustrated, because … And what I’ve found, over and over, is just simply they have not designed and not created those management levels. Once again, they have put their organizational chart together based on humans, rather than based on responsibilities.

So our third step here is we want to be sure to identify the key components of your business. I have three primary components here. We have the component of your business that is responsible for bringing business in, and then … And I usually, on the org chart or on the responsibility chart, have that on the left. The middle one is, now that we have business coming in, how are we going to fulfill that business? That’s our middle one, and then the one on the right, the branch on the right, is how are we going to provide the resources for the other two branches to do what they need to do? So on the far left, we have to bring business in. This is our sales and marketing. In the middle branch, this is, how are we going to fulfill the business that’s come in? That’s our production, operations. And then, over on the far right, how are we going to make sure the resources are available? That’s administration. That’s our office, HR, and so on; finances and so on.

America’s Leadership Expert And our fourth level is now we want to input the levels of leadership and management on each one of these, so as we get all the way down to the worker — now we have our three different branches — now what we want to do is go all the way down to the worker level, who are going to … And from there, we design a level above, which is going to be the leads, and then who is going to manage the leads, and then who is going to manage the managers, so we have these … We end up with like five or six different levels of leadership in our organizational chart. Once again, this is all based on responsibility. This is not based on the number of people in our organization, so don’t freak out and think that, “Oh my gosh, there’s no way I can hire this many people.” We’re not looking to hire a single person to go into each one of these boxes. It is possible for a name — one person — to be in multiple boxes, but we have to identify what the responsibilities are.

Step number five, we want to be sure to input the names into each of these boxes of responsibility now. So what we’re going to do, based on the people that we do have, we want to begin to identify who is responsible for this box. Over on the sales and marketing, for instance, we’ll walk down that, we have our sales and marketing. America’s Leadership Expert This would be like a VP of sales and marketing. Under the sales and marketing VP would be your district managers, or the main manager over sales and the main manager over marketing. And then under sales, the … Under the sales manager, we would have inside sales and outside sales. That would be your manager over the workers, and then under “outside sales,” you’d actually have your call center, the people that are actually making the phone calls.

So, once again, what we want to do is identify the people that we have. Who is going in each of these boxes? It’s possible here that you will have boxes with nobody’s name in it. That’s important for you to identify, we are missing a person here. Also, it’s very important to identify here that some names are going to be in a ton of boxes. That’s something that we very definitely want to make sure that we are aware of. If you are … If you do have one particular name that is in several boxes going vertically in one column, that may be okay. However, if you are moving across, and going horizontally with a single person in multiple boxes, we may actually be running into some serious problems, because different branches of my company very likely will require different personalities. And for one person to have multiple personalities, yes, we can do that, but we have names for that. So at Clay Staires, with America’s Leadership Expert , what we do is we try to avoid having multiple personalities in our company at any given time.

Step number six is simply, now that we have names in these boxes, we want to evaluate those people. How are they doing? Scale from 1 to 10. How are they doing, with 10 being the highest in this box? And identify your A, B, and C players in each one of the boxes. It’s very possible that in two or three of the boxes, this one employee is doing an 8 or a 9, but in this box that I have that same employee in, they’re a 3 or a 4. The idea is, don’t fire the employee, just get them out of that box.

And so then, finally, step number seven is we’re simply identifying … Now that we’ve identified where we are strong, where we are weak, we go into those weak areas, and we say, “With this one employee, do we need to train them to improve, do we need to transfer them to another area, or do we completely need to eliminate them from the company?” So we train, transfer, or terminate. So this is … It’s kind of how we look at the “who,” how we are going to design our organization. Who is going to do what? It’s called the accountability chart or the responsibility chart, and this will create confidence in you as a leader, as well as all of your people in your organization. This is Clay Staires, America’s Leadership Expert , with podcast number 59, The Staires Steps, and step number three, the “who.”