By Curt Sardeson, February 12, 2019
Mastery – The Sixth Core Value for Open Sky Group
In this article I’d like to continue my discussion of our core values and focus on Mastery. We define this core value as “an expert today or could be in five years, never stops learning, attention to detail and consistency.”
While it would be great to simply hire people who already know everything they need, the reality is that we live in a world of constant change. We are not as concerned about someone already having skills. We are concerned about hiring people who can master new skills as needed. This is why Mastery is a celebrated core value at Open Sky Group and the people who strive to master new things are the most valued.
Mastery and Mentors
Given its importance, we take several steps to encourage this behavior and support it. One very simple thing we do is make sure each new employee is assigned a mentor. The mentor is expected to take a keen interest in helping the new employee become a master at what they do. We expect new employees to utilize their mentor resource and build a good working relationship.
One of our new team members took achieving Mastery very seriously. He took ownership of the mentor relationship and scheduled a weekly meeting with his mentor. This set aside some time for mentor and mentee to focus on the task of sharing knowledge and experiences. This individual began with no knowledge of the JDA WMS and within a year and a half was leading Proof of Concept workshops. For those who know how long it takes to master enterprise software, this was quite an accomplishment.
Mastery and Consistency
We have discovered that when you value Mastery and make it your focus, you tend to see other benefits. For example, the pursuit of helping our people achieve Mastery creates more consistency in our work. This is because you must take the time to identify how you do something if you’re going to teach others. It also encourages our mentors to stop and write down how things are done. Information is then shared with everyone, not just the mentee, which benefits the entire company.
Additionally, our core value of Caring plays a strong role in the success of our mentoring program. While we know it can take time to mentor someone, the mentor is acknowledged and rewarded for taking this time.