07 Jan This is one leadership lesson that I wasn’t expecting
This is one leadership lesson that I wasn’t expecting.
I’ve been thinking through and testing out some of the ‘Big Questions’ that don’t get asked enough of leadership and management teams.
I asked a successful and very humble Managing Director if he had an employee that he couldn’t afford to lose and the confirmation that he did, came without any hesitation. I then asked him what he has ever done about it. I was expecting an answer that was grounded in ’employee engagement’, the various theories of carrot and stick, money and rewards. Perhaps even that you shouldn’t be too dependant upon a star forward. But this is what he actually said and it gave me goose bumps.
“I accept that the person I can least afford to lose will leave. It is only a matter of time before they do.”
He then paused as if to allow me time to consciously process what he just said and then embellished his statement.
“I accept that the person I can least afford to lose will leave. It is only a matter of time, and that takes the pressure off me. I think it takes pressure of them too.
What I do about it is simple. I just make sure that for now, and it is only today that I have, this is the best place for them to develop and grow as person. All the rest, the mercenary stuff and the money just falls into place.”
Of course I couldn’t help asking how long that person had worked for him…
“The best part of 18 years”
We both stood in silence for a moment or two, pondering the simplicity and value of this leadership lesson.