Monday, October 15, 2012

People, Process & Org structures

Perhaps I'm biased by my start-up experience, but I strongly believe that having the right talent in the critical roles is the most important enabler of consistent, successful execution.

To put it another way, having the very best process and well-thought-out org structure in place will help, but will not guarantee success if you don't have the right people in critical roles. Conversely, if you do have the right people in those roles, they will find a way to work around the deficiencies in or change the process and the org structures.

In a start-up, you live and die by the quality of your team. In my experience, even large organizations still depend on a contingent of critical talent. So the most dangerous thing a technology company can do is to start treating its technical talent as a fungible resource - a pure cost to be managed down on a per-unit basis.

Paul Graham's analysis of Yahoo is a great illustration of this.