It’s the season for getting bare-rooted trees into the ground, so last weekend I bought a chestnut tree for the farm. I was getting ready to plant it out when I saw on the back of the tag that it grows to 10m high and 10m wide. The spot beside my cattle yards would only accommodate a 5m diameter tree, and I certainly didn’t want a large overhanging branch to drop its spiny chestnut burrs into the yards, damaging the hooves of my cattle. So, an apple tree is now in that spot, and the chestnut tree is destined for a better location in the orchard, where it has the space it needs to grow.
Isn’t it great that I had that critical piece of information to guide my decision-making? We don’t get that direct insight, though, with the rather more complex humans that we transplant into our organisations. Imagine if you had that critical knowledge at every juncture – recruiting, developing, promoting – knowing the ideal part of your business structure for a particular individual to flourish, what they need around them to produce their best work and what individual strengths they’ll bring to leverage their own growth and the growth of your business.