What do you do when your company’s growth actually outgrows some of your top performers’ abilities?
I love that question because it shows that you’ve got heart. It shows you care about people in your organization. It shows you’re thinking ahead. Unfortunately, we typically wait too long to ask that question. Here’s how to get ahead of the issue.
Just because the company is growing, it doesn’t mean the people grow at the same rate.
If we’re so focused on growing the company, sometimes we forget to grow our people.
Employee growth has to be part of our DNA and culture. Growth is not just the responsibility of the company. The employees need to take responsibility, too. That’s why I say, “If you don’t grow, you go.”
Leaders wrongly assume that employees will grow at the same rate of the company. If you are at the top of a small organization and it grows, you don’t automatically get promoted to the top of the larger organization. We don’t just hire in everyone below the current employees. It doesn’t work like this:
You need to set the expectation that within the organization they need to grow themselves.
I was talking to a CEO who said, “I wish I would have done this sooner! It’s too late to do that now!” Fortunately, for this CEO, he had earned the benefit of the doubt within the entire organization.
I told him to let everyone know about his concern. He couldn’t look the other way. He couldn’t sweep it under the rug. If he did, it was a certain train wreck—a train wreck that was completely predictable.
So, what did he do? He showed care for the employees whose abilities didn’t grow with the company. He sat down with them and had an honest conversation. He showed his concern for the individual. He showed he cared about them beyond the company. He wanted them to be successful – either in his company or another. He was a For You Leader. (Learn what your leadership style is).
Guess what? Some of the people left and found jobs in their sweet spot. Some chose to stay and work on their skills. As a result, the company continued to grow at an incredible rate.