A change was forced upon me this week. As I walked into my local train station I was confronted with a seasonal change: the Christmas shopper. As a commuter into a large City, I suffer the inconvenience of this breed of traveller every year. What this all means for me is change. So, when I wrote the term ‘suffer’ above, it is an exaggerated divergence. What I really meant is that my habits have been disrupted and I had to cope with a change in my routine.
Last week I attended the Institute of Directors enterprising women in business conference in Salford. Out of nearly 200 delegates I was amongst about 10 men at the day (last year I think k it was just 4 of us!), so I experienced a day from an unusual perspective. Listening to the many female speakers I heard about their views on the challenges of being a woman in business but also the strengths and opportunities.
We will all be familiar with the well-known cliché companies often share about how, “people are our greatest asset”. Yet all too often see examples of where these words do not get back up by the actions of decision makers in a business. Busy managers, working under external pressures like cash-flow and KPIs can easily put aside good intentions.However, from a logical point of view, creating and keeping highly engaged teams of people, your business is a no brainer.
I listened to a business owner speak today and he said his competitive advantage is his staff team. It is 'easy' to say you want to invest in your people to make your business to be successful; it is surprising how hard some find this to do in reality, yet nurturing leadership in your business does not have to mean management is poor.