Chapter 2 - Develop your peopleDevelop your people to drive your strategyYou've built your own company; it's been growing nicely and doing well. Your vision for the product or service you offer has come right, and you have happy customers and contented staff. You've put in long hours, stayed on top of all key aspects of running and managing your company activities, and have a small number of key loyal staff - managers - who have grown up with you and the company. You deservedly take great pride from what you've achieved and built.This chapter is about your people, and some ideas about how to support them to support you.The key objective in undertaking these initiatives is aligning your people and their skills with what you and your company need to move forward and grow robustly and sustainably. Your staff are no doubt a wonderful bunch, but they are a collection of individuals with a range of personal ambitions, skills, and views of what is happening and what will happen at work. 'Aligning' or 'engaging' with your staff is not about trying to brainwash them into 'living the company', but about maximising your chances to bring about a tight team, giving them the opportunity to bring their best skills into play, and getting their support for building the company by encouraging and listening to their ideas about how the future should happen.I've set out over the course of this chapter a seven step programme of how you could go about this. You might not need all these steps, and may want to change the order in which you tackle them, so do use these in whatever way fits your specific circumstances - and do talk to your team about this!