In life and in business, you will win some and lose some, but what is truly important is finding out the one thing you are passionate about. Realizing your passion is important, because it makes all the decisions that follow easy. Because you always know what you are aiming for, your ultimate goal.
For instance, if you know you are passionate about running your own business, and you love the satisfaction and fulfillment it gives you, the decision to turn down an offer to sell it for a large amount of money becomes easier to make. In the book, Delivering Happiness, Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh shares more about how to run a successful business and make the customer truly happy.
Creating, doing, and making things that you are passionate about is more important than making a lot of money doing things you can’t stand. Before you go any further, you need to decide if you are going to be true to yourself and, “stop chasing the money and start chasing the passion.”
One way to find your passion is by trying many things to see what works. Along the way, you might find that one thing through the process of elimination, by realizing what it is you don’t want to do.
The more things you eliminate from your list, the easier it becomes to find your real passion. And the closer you get to finding your passion, the less likely it is you will end up chasing the wrong dreams.
Rapid growth for your company can be exciting, gaining investment dollars and hiring new employees every week. But beware of hypergrowth and take it as a warning sign. Growing too quickly and hiring the wrong people can diminish your company’s culture.
No matter how many positions you think have to be filled, always take the time to carefully consider each new hire. You have to ensure every person on your team shares your vision and wants to be a part of the company culture you’ve created.
Conversely, making quick hires can be seriously damaging to company culture if they are out solely for personal gain and career advancement. Make these hiring mistakes, and you are bound to wake up one morning realizing that you no longer enjoy your workplace and the people in it.
This is exactly what happened to Tony Hsieh and his first company, LinkExchange, when they began growing so quickly that he realized he didn’t even recognize the people in his own office. Caught up in the rush and excitement of the company’s success, the company culture suffered, because the new hires weren’t passionate about LinkExchange’s mission. They were just looking to make a lot of money and retire.
In the end, Tony learned the valuable lesson that it’s best to grow a company slowly to carefully monitor the hiring process and ensure that everyone on board is contributing to the culture you wish to create. Short-term sacrifices to protect company culture and stick to core values are a long-term benefit.
The culture of a company is one of its most important characteristics. Your culture is your brand, your employees are your brand ambassadors.
So make it a point that each new hire joins the team for more than the skills and experience listed on their CV. Only hire people you would happily go out for drinks with.
Connectedness, and feeling like part of a tribe makes people happy and creates a sense of fulfillment. Both are strong motivators. When a group of people feels connected, like a family, there is a strong sense of obligation to the whole team, to work harder and treat each other better.
However, simply feeling connected is not enough. Your team should also have a shared purpose and shared passions. Hire only people who emulate, live, and breathe your core values.
If you have a strong company culture, formed by people who have a common goal, your company’s core values will form naturally.
Company culture is even more important than customer service, because if the culture is right, great customer service will naturally develop from it.
For Tony Hsieh, the process of finding a great culture involved much trial and error, but mainly boiled down to spending time together as a team outside the office. When the entire Zappos team moved to Las Vegas together, it forced them to rely on each other and grow closer.
A team doesn’t need to move to a new city to do that, but it helped Tony and the Zappos team hunker down and think about what was collectively important to them, and out of this came their core values.
To build a great company, you have to pursue growth and learning. Continual growth should be a goal for your overall business and for all the people that are part of it.
Create a culture that fosters both personal and professional development. Build an office library, offer classes for developing new skills. Employees should feel like their work is part of a greater purpose, and that learning and growth are not only allowed, but appreciated.
It benefits your business to constantly present all employees with new challenges and opportunities to grow. They won’t feel stagnant, but can develop and take on more tasks and responsibilities as they grow with you.
Check out my related post: Do you have The Charge? – Part 1