Locate your best employees, particularly in leadership positions, and invest in them for continued success.

I find that the best process will fail with the wrong people. The best system will not drive results if the wrong people are involved. Yet if exceptional people are involved, even the most mediocre of processes and systems will thrive! People are your #1 asset.

For example, I still vividly remember a project that had a “dream team” of people but the leader was inept. He managed to wipe out all progress continually – and frustrate the people to boot. On the other hand, I also remember several projects that looked somewhat hopeless in terms of delivering results according to the desired aggressive schedule yet they succeeded due to the people. Ask any of your great people whether they’d rather have talent or products, processes or systems? Undoubtedly, they’ll choose the talent.

Who is your talent? Start by making sure you are fully aware of your top talent. Nurture your talent. There is no better investment as you’ll move a mile with your talent’s innovative ideas vs. an inch by dictating “best practice” processes and ignoring your talent’s feedback. Your top talent is your secret to success. Treat it as such!