Tips for Leaders and Managers

Art of the Start Book

The Art of the Start: The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything by Guy Kawasaki.

I just read finished reading this book and found it quite inspiring. You can look forward to a few teaching tip posts based on Kawasaki’s advice this month.

Here are a few things for managers and CEOs to consider.

Hire Better Than Yourself

“If there is one thing a CEO must do, it is hire managers that are better than she is.

If there is one thing managers must do, it is hire employees who are better than they are.”

This is important because you want the best of the best for your organization. If you hire below yourself, for whatever reason, and the managers below you do the same thing, your company will suffer. So, don’t fail to hire someone out of fear. Be a good leader and stack your team with the best.

In order to do this, you must have three qualities

  • The humility to admit that people can perform a function better than you
  • The ability to discern which people are A+ or A players
  • The self-confidence to recruit these better than me people

Hire Minimum Viable People

Kawasaki uses the term “minimum viable person” and while this may sound degrading, it really isn’t. If you can’t find the perfect person for the job, hire the best person you can and work with them to develop their skills even further.

“One of the keys tasks of the art of leading is giving people and chance and making employees better.

A great leader hires people for their strengths and then assigns them tasks that take advantage of those strengths. And she hires people with other strengths to provide training and assistance to address the weaknesses of other employees. This enables them to do their best work, as opposed to just getting by without exposing those weaknesses.”

Judge Yourself First

“Judge yourself  by what you accomplished and judge others by what they intended. This means you are harsher on yourself than on others.

Start reviews by saying, ‘I could’ve provided you with better management.’ People who adopt this self criticism strategy will improve as managers because they take responsibility for lousy outcomes. Just as important, they will inspire employees to improve too because of the good example they set.”

Stay tuned for more wisdom from this book. I recommend reading it if you plan to start a business. But there are also things in here that any manager or teacher can use to improve what they do too.

My List of 2018 Reads – still catching up on the books I read last year but didn’t have the time to blog about.