In a recent post in Leading Blog: Building a Community of Leaders Michael McKinney discusses the fact that healthy work environments attract healthy people. So building a high performing team and retaining talented people means working on the culture and environment in which people perform. I especially liked the quote by Bruce Wassertein the CEO of Lazard, which was cited from Giving Great Advice:
We have to want to attract a network of stars—people who communicate and cooperate but are entrepreneurial and stand out as quality individuals, who are not the cogs in a corporate machine. Quality people must be managed with customized approaches. The idea is to create a hothouse where young talent is nourished by our culture and people are encouraged to think creatively, think deeply, think about the long-term client relationship—but above all, think. I want them to reflect on what they are doing and why, and then wonder, “Can we do better?”
Management’s role is to help them. It’s an iterative process. Create an atmosphere where we can all teach one another and stimulate the imagination. Ideas are not hierarchical—they come from all levels—so allowing the talent of younger people to bubble up is our imperative.