Book Chapter

Hit the ground running and make people your priority

In "Find, Keep and Grow the Right People," Chapter 4 of Jason Jennings' book Hit the Ground Running: A Manual for New Leaders, he discusses how one enterprise company credits its success to its most valuable assets -- customer service and satisfied customers. In this chapter, Jennings discusses how the leaders at Staples Inc. realized the importance of people to the company's success and therefore made it a top priority to hire, retain and grow the right people.

Hit the Ground RunningThe 94,000 people who make up our team are the heart of this company," says Ron Sargent, CEO of Staples. "They're the reason we're able to provide exemplary customer service and ultimately earn a profit for our shareholders."

To learn more about how Staples leveraged the power of its people for economic success, download the full chapter in .pdf format: "Find, Keep and Grow the Right People."

Excerpted from Hit the Ground Running: A Manual for New Leaders, by Jason Jennings, by arrangement with Portfolio, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc., Copyright © Jason Jennings, 2009.

About the book: In Hit the Ground Running, Jennings features case studies on a number of successful companies, including The J.M. Smucker Co., Staples, Hanover Insurance and Humana Inc. In his three years of research for the book, Jennings found that the companies he interviewed all had leaders who produced results fast, and guided the companies by rules that defied conventional thinking. The book reveals tactics and golden rules for hitting the ground running.

About the author: Jennings is an author, keynote speaker and authority on business leadership. He has spent 20 years founding and leading successful businesses and teaching other companies how to achieve their full economic potential. Jennings is the author of numerous books, including It's Not the Big That Eat the Small … It's the Fast That Eat the Slow, Think Big, Act Small, and his latest book, Hit the Ground Running: A Manual for New Leaders, which was published in April.

For more commentary from Jennings on leadership qualities, read "Eight qualities of a good leader during a recession." You can also listen to a webcast with Jennings in which he shares five secrets to greater productivity.


This was first published in July 2009

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