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November 29, 2021
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How do you build a business when capable talent is scarce or unaffordable?

Skills are short globally. One of the big issues delaying the Trillion Dollar infrastructure projects in the US is the scarcity of certain skills, such as surveying.

This shortage of skills is not a problem if you don’t want to grow. 

But unfortunately if you’re not growing, you’re dying because your competitors are doing everything in their power to grow. And new competitors are coming in all the time.

As an example, 282 000 people in the USA in the last quarter who lost their jobs through Covid didn’t file for unemployment insurance because they found opportunities to service customers using the skills and gaps they had seen in their previous employment! Many of these are your new competition.

If you want to grow, or understand that you have to grow, then build a business that lessens its reliance on skills that are scarce and expensive. These skills are usually also unreliable because if they are so scarce, they can move on to whoever is willing to pay them the most.

Listen to this podcast from The Money Show where Pavlo Phitidis discusses how to build a business that doesn’t rely on scarce skills and talent.

Structure determines behaviour. This means you must build a business differently to get the result you want. Find out exactly what problem you solve for a clearly defined target market, with a consistent, good experience, then build the systems that deliver that outcome reliably.

A system is a series of activities, in a sequence that can be measured and trained.

You can now hire people, not because they bring some of their own superstar ability to the role, but because they can be trained to operate the system.

This approach, of hiring system operators, rather than mavericks and gurus, has a number of benefits:

  1. Recruitment is simplified as you can assess through simple questions whether someone has the experience or capability to perform the tasks that make up the system.
  2. Your employees are motivated and have purpose as they know what to do, when to do it, to achieve a specific outcome. Their performance can be clearly measured and managed.
  3. Your business becomes less reliant on you, as the systems that underpin it, are documented, trainable and don’t depend on a few superstars to get things done.
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