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People: The Center of Financial Success

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Selecting the right priorities, understanding the laws of business (the Five Business Drivers), and knowing instinctively how to make money is one thing. But making it happen is something else. Leaders have to deliver results day in, and day out, over the long haul. And profitable and sustainable growth, according to Ram Charan, is what gives an organization energy, builds confidence, and generates the resources to go forward; but none of this happens without people (customers and employees).

Whether you're a CEO, the head of your department, or just getting your business career started, you must be a leader of the business and a leader of people. Think about it, unless you're a one-man or one-woman shop, you cannot possibly execute all of your priorities by yourself. A leader of the business knows what to do. A leader of people knows how to get it done. It's no wonder that at the center of our Five Business Drivers model is People.

Jack Breen is an excellent example of an executive who recognized the importance of a strong people strategy. In 1978 Jack moved from the industrial sector to become the Chief Executive of The Sherwin-Williams Company, a position he would hold for more than twenty years. Jack began his tenure faced with major problems, sales figures had been steadily declining; increased market c