I recently had the time to read a book by Howard Behar called “It’s Not About the Coffee” – Lessons on Putting People First from a Life at Starbucks”. Behar makes a point about the dangers of any business simply being a seller of a commodity or a service. He states that for Starbucks to be successful in the long term, they will need to do more than sell expensive coffee. He goes on to state that Starbucks does exactly this, they deliver more value – “we’re in the people business serving coffee, not the coffee business serving people”.
This statement resonates strongly with us as eDeaf. We are not in the business of simply educating and placing Deaf students or providing these learners as staff to businesses. We are in the business of empowering possibilities and delivering solutions, and this is clear in our PARTNERED SOLUTIONS approached. This is what makes us stand out as a business and brand. We continuously strive to produce students who have the relevant skills and training needed, are of the highest standards and have the ability to do the job.
With the wide number of employees to choose from, it is easy for the businesses to not stand for anything less than excellence, and to simply take their business elsewhere. Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin group of companies, was asked his viewpoint on employees within his business, and his approach to staff management, his answer was simple, yet highly effective answer to this – “train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to”. In business it is vital that perception and reality match (both internally and externally). Investing in the right talent will help us to grow the business, for if we don’t, the talented will leave and we may just be left with those no one else wants.
Now we need to now ask ourselves two questions:
1. What does it mean to be an eDeaf manager?
2. How do the eDeaf values affect your leadership style?
Your performance and attitude as a manager has a direct impact on the success or failure of our business. The most difficult part of any manager’s job is that of people management. Getting the most out of all of those we deal with. There are many ways that we can strive to get the most out of our team here are some suggestions:
Continuous professional development. Keep learning, keep striving to be more and achieve more. Lead by example.
All of these skills factors contribute to a well-rounded and highly effective leader and member of the eDeaf management team. We urge you to consider each and everyone of these elements as you move forward into becoming the best leader you can be.