Ideas + People = Action and Results
November 2, 2010
The goal of every idea is to be put into action. Harvest has rapidly progressed from an idea to a start-up to an operating business, all really in the space of 18 months. We have welcomed great investors into our Company, we have grown revenue, earnings, become a profitable company and won some great awards. In short, we have begun to put ideas into action.
However, as other entrepreneurs can attest, if it were only so simple to have a great idea! But ideas are not nearly enough—in fact they are not even 10% of the process of building a great company. The other 90% is the quality and determination of the people engaged in the vision. Ideas + People = Action and Results. Do they understand and agree with the vision? Do they feel they make a difference? Is there a culture that allows for consensus and even conflict?
Though we cannot certainly claim victory or even clear success yet as a young company, I am encouraged that we have begun the hard work of building this foundation: building a great team and an equally strong culture. Two weeks ago, at our facility in Richmond, BC, I witnessed a transformation in our facility, an overhaul of the look and feel of our 16 year old site – signage, roads, excavation, shrubbery, all completed in less than 10 days. It was, as the cliché goes, a team effort – but there was great pride not just in the results, but in the fact that the team was from three cities (Boston, Seattle, Vancouver), and all rallied around a common purpose. There was clarity of responsibility, clarity of goals, and even some conflict – all symbols of a positive, determined and engaged team.
This trusting team dynamic has taken root – whether it is our new Vancouver-area website www.FraserRichmond.ca, our recent grant applications, our product marketing efforts, our busy office on Gordon Way, or our first-of-a-kind energy facility in Vancouver that is coming to life as I write this. Further, we have hired a new head of Human Resources, Jeff Knapp, to help drive this organizational development across our 150 person team in the US and Canada.
And when I say this team-orientation “taken root”, that is just it—the seeds are planted, and some great results have already been seen in this young company. As an old African proverb goes (which I have re-borrowed from Al Gore), “If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” With the roots in place, and our team coming together, I like our chances of going very far.
By Nathan Gilliland
President and CFO, Harvest Power