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Why You Should Invest in People

Published on 29 Jan 2013

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At the end of the day, it’s about developing and forming a team that is able to come up with the next big idea. Peter Drucker said it the best: “Your greatest resource is your employees,” and it’s up to you to get the best out of them. Traditionally, that has meant more holidays and monetary compensation, but we have come a long way in our understanding of what makes employees happy and motivated. While money is viewed as the most common turn-to, it turns out it’s only a fraction of what motivates an employee. A salary increase, in fact, is said to only resonate in the minds of an employee for only a few weeks.

What we are trying to achieve here at Incognito Software is a perfect mix of remuneration, benefits, and workplace environment. It is my goal to provide an environment for people to feel motivated and thrive in. We have recently decided to change our agile programming methodology to that of a hybrid methodology. Although being agile has helped us in many ways throughout the years, it has become a constraint during the development process. Creativity requires as few constraints as possible, and you want to have an environment that allows the minds of workers to create that next big thing. You need to make sure your organization and work environment allow people to carry flexible schedules, has tools and toys available for use, and a management team that is responsive to ideas.

If this sounds like complete chaos, I want to assure you it is not. People need to be able to try new things. Some ideas may turn out to be great, while others may be complete duds. Don’t just focus on the negatives; they are just the byproduct of great ideas. Thomas Edison once reportedly said that he tried 1,000 concepts before he invented the light bulb. When asked about his 1,000 failures he simply replied, “I did not fail 1,000 times. I just discovered 1,000 ways how not to make a light bulb.”

So let your staff experiment and be creative whenever you can. Either they will come up with something great, or simply figure out one way of how not to do something. Whatever the case, they will be happy to have the autonomy and chance to prove themselves right or wrong. And that, my friend, is priceless.