Sunday, July 19, 2015

On Starbucks and leadership

Fast Company's July/August issue highlighted Starbucks' 'Race Together' campaign. The article surprised me with its inside look into Howard Schlutz's brain. I found myself nodding along and underlining prolifically.

He highlights how important it is to build an organization where people are working toward a common goal. How often do we do this in our organizations today? We're solely focused on timelines and product launches and - most importantly - the bottom line. Schultz's argument is that no employee is motivated my money. They just aren't.

"You can't attract and retain great people if your sole purpose is to make money, because people, especially young people, want a sense of belonging - to be part of an organization they really believe is doing great work. You can't create an emotional attachment if you stand for nothing"

I've worked with leaders who rallied their teams around big, lofty goals. I've also worked for leaders who only want to drive profit, setting a big dollar goal and hoping its enough to get people out of bed every day. I agree with Schlutz - it's just not.

Find a way to share a vision so exciting and compelling with your team that you can palpably feel the energy it gives them. Build and grow and nurture that energy every day. If Starbucks is any example, the dollars will follow that energy - beyond your wildest imagination.

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