8 elements to success through people



MANAGING people in a small to medium-sized business inevitably brings both challenge and opportunity.

And while there’s no shortage of advice as to how to best lead and manage people in order to improve your business, it can be difficult to know just where to start.

That’s where the 8 Elements to Success through People© model, exclusive to HR Success, comes in.

By identifying the components common to those businesses that most successfully manage their people, the model presents a simple structure to help you assess current practices in your business, then identify and prioritise practical strategies to improve business profitability, staff engagement and culture.

Let’s take a quick look at each of the 8 elements of the model. As we do so, think about your own team or business – where are your strengths, and where are the opportunities for improvement?

Clear Vision & Strategy: Successful businesses have clear goals and ensure that the activity of all those involved in the business is aligned towards achieving them.

Effective Leadership: Leadership needs to be effective from both task and people perspectives: achievement-focused, capable, authentic and relatable, consultative and consistent.

Recruiting Right: Successful businesses recruit for skills, knowledge AND temperament. They also have clear strategies and processes to support the recruitment and retention of the very best employees.

Setting Expectations: Successful businesses set and reinforce clear expectations throughout the employment lifecycle: position descriptions, recruitment, induction, performance reviews, recognition and reward strategies.

Being Accountable: In addition to setting clear expectations, the best businesses foster a culture of accountability: KPIs/benchmarking, customer and employee surveys, performance management and review.

Equipping Others: Learning and development should be effectively managed and clearly linked to business outcomes: needs analysis, talent management, skills training, management training and coaching.

Managing Risk: Sustainable businesses manage the risks associated with employment: succession planning, attraction and retention, performance, health and safety and compliance with Fair Work and other legislation.

Valuing Others: Effective businesses nurture and value the contribution of their employees: recognition and reward structures, providing opportunities for growth, motivating for performance, saying thank you!


So how about your team or business? What’s working well, and where are the opportunities for improvement? Once you’ve identified your key areas for improvement, see if you can come up with say 2 or 3 strategies for each.

If your priority is “Setting Expectations” for example, it could be a case of working with your team to revise job descriptions, to ensure both the “what” and “how” of what you need them to do is clear.

If “Effective Leadership” is an issue, maybe it’s time to assess the leadership capabilities of your managers, team leaders and supervisors (and yourself of course!) and consider appropriate opportunities to further develop their capabilities (all too often technically-capable staff find themselves in a position where they are leading others, yet receive insufficient support to build their people-management skills).

In future articles, we’ll provide a range of tips and tools to help you along the way to achieving success through people. In the meantime, check out the HR Success website for more info (www.hrsuccess.com.au). Greg Mitchell is Principal Consultant/Owner at HR Success.

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