People are the key!

It’s been said time and time again that an organization’s greatest asset is its people. Whether it’s the leadership of an organization charting the strategic vision of the enterprise, or the hourly workers assembling a finished product, people create the value. Products, processes or images that are usually first to be marketed in print or various advertising channels fade because of competition, obsolescence and environmental factors will eventually wreck havoc on a product. As long a good people are involved in product development, the endless stream of innovative products will be replenished.
One of the best and most timely examples of this fact is the creative power behind the Apple brand and its innovative product lines. Many attribute Apple’s success not to their extremely popular products that seem to leap off the shelves as soon as they are introduced, but to Steve Jobs, Apple’s current CEO. Jobs is so revered and highly thought of that speculation regarding his health status sends the company’s stock on a roller coaster ride. The investment community actually questions should anything happen to Jobs, would the future of Apple be in jeopardy? This may be a case of putting too much value in people, or more specifically one person, but it is a very relevant example nonetheless.
Those individuals who achieve the ‘rock star’ levels of influence and power within their organizations usually think on higher abstract levels and conceptionalize not on what is coming next, but what will take place three, four or five years from now. Additionally these individuals have mastered the art of relationships and understand that it is individual people who get things done, not corporations. Therefore in the most intimate form of valuing their people they work hard to build effective relationships that bear fruit. John C. Maxwell a noted authority on leadership very succinctly has classified the five rules of leadership. Maxwell says:

• Get along with yourself: The one relationship you have until you die is with yourself. Treat yourself with the respect      and love you deserve.
• Value People: You cannot make another person feel important if you secretly feel that he or she is a nobody. Recognize that everyone has innate value and treat them accordingly.
• Make the effort to form relationships: The result of a person who has never served others? Loneliness. Chuck Swindoll said, “It’s like they say in the Army, when you dig a foxhole, make room enough for two.” Reach out, make room and enjoy new relationships.
• Understand the reciprocity rule: What you put into the lives of others comes back into your own. Give generously, love unfailingly and show respect to everyone.
• Follow the golden rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. If every person made more decisions based on the Golden Rule, we would all make more right decisions.

People are the key to every long term success. Invest in them wisely and the dividends will be huge and long lasting.

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