Owners of professional sports franchises invest tens of millions of dollars to draft the top players, and their talent scouts start following athletes as early as junior high school. They have to invest with a forward outlook, and that means they have to constantly be on lookout for talent no matter when it appears or where they find it. If you want to build your own corporate dream team you also have to become a fulltime talent scout. Keep your radar on all the time, because you never know where you might discover your next big value-adding player or diamond-in-the-rough potential asset.

I heard of one business owner, for example, who found a new sales manager not at a college or convention but at a Lexus dealership. He was so impressed with the way this guy presented himself that after buying a sedan he asked him to head the corporate sales team. The person installing your cable TV may have a smart roommate who is looking for a position as an on-site computer technician. The bartender at the hotel could be a brilliant marketing and advertising copywriter who is just working part time to pay the mortgage while between jobs. Scan the horizon. Think outside the box. Try to see what people are passionate about and engage them in a way that brings their special ability to the surface and into focus.

Take me, for instance. I went to college, earned a degree in accounting, and landed a job at Macy’s. But soon I transitioned into the role of store manager because they realized that with my accounting background I would be good at managing a department store budget during tough economic times. But before too long someone noticed I had a knack for training new hires. So within a year or two they moved me into a senior level executive position where I could concentrate on developing talent for the whole organization. Some people who had known me before were surprised to find out that the new addition to the boardroom team was the one they used to know – the quiet, introverted Sarah who loved to crunch numbers and fill in ledger sheets. It just goes to show that you never know where you might find the right person to take your team – and your business – to the next level.

Building your dream team is about having the right attitude and vision to search out ideal people who can make dynamic contributions by rounding out your team with a unique and special skill set. Know what you need, and then look for it everywhere, during all your interactions. If you don’t have your eyes open you might miss a golden opportunity. But with a vigilant mindset and your antennae up, just when you least expect it a key player will suddenly appear.

Author's Bio: 

Sarah Hathorn, AICI CIP, CPBS is an internationally distinguished executive coach, corporate consultant, professional speaker, and the founding CEO of her own company, Illustra Consulting. A career acceleration and leadership presence expert, Hathorn created the innovative Predictable Promotion System, a 10-step proprietary process she uses to coach managers aspiring to be directors, directors seeking vice presidential promotions, and VP’s eager to ascend to the C-suite. Hathorn served as a senior level executive for a Fortune 100 company for 25 years, and she has more than 30 years of experience mentoring high potentials for rapid career advancement and extraordinary success.
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