The CEO Book Club: Building and Keeping Your High-Tech Team

Over the course of my career, I’ve learned a thing or two about a thing or two, and one of those things is that if you’re going to be successful, you have to commit yourself to never stop learning. Whether you’re in your first job out of college or the CEO, there is always a fountain of ideas to tap into. As SailPoint has grown and evolved over the years, it has become incredibly clear to me and the rest of SailPoint’s leadership team that it is our people that truly drive our success.  It takes a mindful effort to treat our people right, so they can continue to make this company a great place to work for all of our colleagues, where each and every one of them can pursue the professional growth path they desire.  Accordingly, I thought I’d highlight three of my favorite business books that help me think about people and their centrality to our business.

The Advantage by Patrick Lencioni

I am a huge fan of Patrick Lencioni. His books are digestible and practical. The Advantage really addresses how to achieve organizational health, which means, in case it’s not obvious, the opposite of organizational sickness, which most of us have, unfortunately, experienced in our work lives.  To ensure the analogy is clear, let me explain. If something relatively small happens in the human body that goes ignored, whether a self-inflicted injury or an externally driven infection, it usually leads to bigger problems later – sometimes MUCH bigger problems. The same thing can happen in business, and the responsibility to keep the organization healthy starts and ends with leadership. Lencioni tackles the issue of maintaining a well-oiled leadership team to maintain all the functional areas and needs of the business.

 The Ideal Team Player by Patrick Lencioni

Are you hungry, humble and smart? Lencioni succinctly characterizes the ideal team player in this book, which is really the philosophy I’ve followed through my career for both myself and in hiring others. While The Advantage serves as a great book to share with your management team, this book applies to everyone from the ground up, in a format that utilizes a mock business scenario, or business fable, to make its points. Everyone in the workplace can benefit from this easy-to-read book, whether you’re in leadership trying to bring in and retain great talent, or whether you’re a member of the team, and need help understanding why certain team members tend to create issues.

The One Minute Manager by Ken Blanchard

In keeping with the “individuals” part of our “Four I’s” values, I can’t leave The One Minute Manager out. The best minute a manager can spend is with his or her direct reports. So much can be accomplished in that one minute, from praising to correcting, and this book gives point-by-point ways to use those minutes effectively. The adage “people quit managers not companies” is, unfortunately, a reality for so many companies, and we don’t want that at SailPoint. I’m guessing you don’t want that for your company either. Because it’s a short book that can be taken and applied immediately, it’s a great tool for all levels of leadership in the organization.

Part of being a good leader comes from knowing that you don’t know it all. These are just a few of the books I’ve kept in my library over the years. Are there any that you’ve kept in yours? Over the next few months, I’m going to be sharing my thoughts on a few of the books that have helped me be a better leader and person and, in turn, guide my team in building out our organization.  Happy reading!