Is Your Top Performer Your Weakest Link?
I’m not sure how you determine management expertise; by the number of years you’ve managed people or the number of experiences you’ve had during the time you’ve managed. I’m sure this is a topic that would cultivate many different opinions. Regardless of how you define management expertise, I do know during my ten plus years of managing people, I’ve learned some pretty valuable lessons. But, there’s one in particular that sticks out to me.
Being part of a company that prides itself on being a “sales” organization, it’s easy for me to identify performers and non-performers from a sales aspect. And I’m sure this rings true for many organizations since it’s measurable. One other area our company prides itself on is creating a culture that breeds a “Best Place to Work” atmosphere. And because of this, we believe culture fit is as important as measurable results. This is where it can be a little harder to identify “performers” versus “non-performers.”
I was watching a Ted Talk when someone referenced Jack Welch’s performance matrix and the idea of how performance and culture working or not working together can impact an organization tremendously. The whole idea is that in every organization there are four types of people: (1) Culture Fit/High Performer, (2) Culture Fit/Non-Performer, (3) Non-Culture Fit/High Performer and (4) Non-Culture Fit/Non-Performer. I’m sure this probably makes perfect sense to you. But what's interesting is they identified the one type that can have the most negative impact on a company as the Non-Culture Fit/High Performer.
And there was my lesson, clear as day. I knew this type; but more importantly, I immediately reflected on my shortcomings in managing this type of person. If you’re facing a similar challenge, here are some questions I now ask myself when confronted with the situation:
- Would you allow this behavior from an average performer?
- What type of precedent are you setting by allowing this behavior?
- What are the short and long-term pains/gains by not having this type of behavior in your organization?
- Lastly, by allowing this behavior, what kind of message does this send about your management style?
We’re all evaluated by performance – usually metrics. But don’t be blinded by this to the detriment of other key elements that drive success in your organization – specifically, culture.
- The ROI Behind Building a Best Place to Work
- 6 Steps to Winning the Sales Game
- Managing a Sales Team Can Be Challenging
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