As CEOs, we often find ourselves pushing for change. We believe our organizations must constantly grow or else stagnate, shrink and die. And you want to provide a dynamic, vibrant, and expanding organization that people will want to join. So as CEO’s, we’re restless. We’re constantly looking for opportunities to expand our reach.
But as a company grows, it gets exponentially more complex, putting more pressure on the middle managers.
Sometimes we try to protect our colleagues from the extra work. Sometimes it just seems faster and easier to do it ourselves. But if our people don’t get opportunities to develop new skillsets, they won’t be able to keep up as the company grows. Eventually, they’ll become a drag on the business if we don’t let them go–but these might be loyal employees of twenty years’ duration.
As CEO’s, we have to do what’s best for the company, but we also have to do it in an honorable and ethical. A generous payout or a transfer to a more appropriate position might help take the sting out, but there’s no really great way to let a good person go. The honorable thing is not to create the bad situation to begin with.
As a CEO, your job is to coach and develop your team, not to run with the ball yourself. Sometimes that means delegating and teaching. Sometimes it means sending someone out for formal classes or to get a bachelor’s degree or an MBA. By proactively offering opportunities for middle managers to step up, you ensure you won’t outgrow loyal and capable employees.
- Real leaders get things done through other people; they don’t jump in to the nitty-gritty work themselves.
- When you delegate responsibility, you give others an opportunity to develop as professionals.
- Not all bad situations have good solutions. By thinking ahead, you can avoid the problem in the first place.