Resourcing for Growth

There are two approaches that I commonly seen taken to resourcing projects:

  1. There are people and tasks. Like a game of Tetris, as tasks flow in, the goal is merely to arrange them on each person's schedule, avoiding gaps.
  2. There are people and tasks. Every person has a unique ability and future vision. Tasks are an opportunity to challenge people and help them grow, moving them closer toward their vision.

As much as I'd like to say that the former works well in a setting like a supermarket, I can't get on board. Having spent most of my teen years working at Wegmans, I find the latter approach has merit, no matter what the work entails.

I started at Wegmans pushing carts and ringing up customers. Through my several years there, I did everything from stocking shelves to managing disgruntled customers at the customer service desk to making drinks in the coffee shop. Somewhere along the line, I became a Front End Coordinator, scheduling cashiers for the day and addressing any issues during a customer's checkout.

I was always learning, and that variety kept me going. If it wasn't for that, I don't know that I would have stayed as long. I still apply what I learned at Wegmans to my life and work today.

All in all, I believe that people tend to stick around longer when they feel challenged in their job and see their efforts moving them forward. In that way, I see no difference between shifting an employee from cashier to customer service and assigning a designer on their first e-commerce project.