Good Staff, Bad Staff, Indifferent Staff
Having had my own business (with my husband) for over 24 years, I have experienced a full range of staff in all different shapes, sizes, marital statuses, kids, no kids, lazy, driven and indifferent.
Right now I have a fairly self-motivated staff. A couple of them are more driven than the rest. A couple need to be “bossed” but they are all competent and doing their jobs.
Good Staff = Driver Types?
I want everyone to be top driver-types who sparkle and come up with brilliant ideas for the company. Is that too much to ask? Perhaps it is … because if they WERE all to be that driven, perhaps they would leave and start their own businesses. Maybe, and maybe not, depending on incentives and my creative management skills.
Indifferent Staff = No Ambition
I look back and think how lazy I used to be in school, no strong ambition, getting 75% or better without any real effort, but no goal to get anywhere. I got married very young (at least that was an excellent choice and 44 years later, I am proud that I did THAT right) and went on to do a variety of jobs where I was somewhat indifferent about what I was accomplishing.
Business Management Courses
Somewhere along the line, however, I started to be more interested in how I could do my job better. How could I manage my time more efficiently? How could I be faster, better, more creative so that I enjoyed my position more? I took lots of management courses and gradually increased my effectiveness at what I was doing.
Eventually, I found three lawyers, moved them into a set of offices near my home, and proceeded to be the Receptionist and Secretary to all three and the Bookkeeper to two of them. I worked no overtime and had Friday afternoons off. I was fast, interested, and busy to say the least. They each paid me half a salary but I got all their work done. After a few years, I left them a fully detailed, step-by-step, completely indexed manual for my replacement when my husband’s company moved us to Mexico City.
Good Staff = Self-Motivated
Why was I able to do that job when most lawyers need 2-3 staff to keep everything together for them? I think it was because I always played games with myself on how well I could do something, how quickly I could get it done (but professionally as I am a perfectionist), how I could do it better next time. I learned from my mistakes, practiced hard at things I wasn’t very good at until I was, I pushed myself to learn the legal profession, I wanted my bosses to do well and for them to be on top of their jobs also. They actually called me “the boss” because I pushed them to get their work done so that they were up to their game too. After all, if they didn’t do well and make enough money to pay me, then I would be out of a job!
Nowadays, I am the CEO and President of my company which teaches healthcare professionals to be the CEO’s of their own practices and it is very rewarding to watch someone go from “I’m just a doctor” to “I am in control of my practice and loving it.” I have a team of about 15, and we have fun working together. We help our clients train their staff, lead their staff, hire good staff, and generally become more effective and efficient bosses.
I never dreamed when I was young and lazy that I would change and morph into the person I am today and that I would be in this type of business. But here I am and I think that if I can do it, anyone can. They just have to WANT to, and then DRIVE themselves forward … without waiting for a push.