Building a "Star" Firm

  • August 9, 2010
  • Scott

Great post by R “Ray” Wang on Enterprise Irregulars about building a “Star Analyst” Firm.  While it is targeted at star analyst firms, most of the points apply well to any services firm that intends to trade on the idea of being “stars” in their requisite space. Tenet #1:

Almost everyone I spoke with began by saying, “Start with star talent.  Don’t make compromises on B-players.”  Then they added, “Most will fail to keep this up over time because the firm gets greedy and focused on leverage instead of client quality.  Keep in mind, if you lack stars, you won’t attract stars.  Set high standards for recruitment.”  The experts are right.  Buyers, sellers, and the media have to recognize your team as market leaders.

I couldn’t agree more.  It is exactly why, when we started BP3, that we started by thinking about who we wanted to talk to and build our team with.  It is also why we focus on what Ray refers to as “Star” potential.  Lombardi used to refer to these people as “heroes” – the people who could do it all: technology, process improvement, coaching, and thought leadership.  There was also a note about alumni.  I agree with Ray that it is important to recognize that people will leave over time – and to keep in touch with that alumni network.  By taking an active role in two previous employers’ alumni efforts, our business at BP3 has benefited directly and indirectly.  Of course, that wasn’t the goal, but it was one of the side-effects.

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