Yesterday evening I had the privilege of meeting the brilliant chef and restaurateur, Tom Douglas. Tom was on tour promoting his latest book, The Dahlia Bakery Cookbook. While speaking to the audience Tom emphasized the importance of cooking with quality ingredients. "By using the best ingredients possible, my work is already 70% complete," said Tom.
The rest is getting out of the way and letting the food speak for itself. I found this advice particularly intriguing because I feel its message extends far beyond cooking. In business, art, music, sports, etc. quality "ingredients" are also necessary for success.
Assembling the right team and supplies will help you complete the job quicker and with better results. Even the greatest captains need a crew. As a leader, we must provide direction, but we also must learn when to step aside, and let the "ingredients" do the talking.