If you ask any manager which decisions are the most challenging for them to make, chances are that their answer will be related to their employees. Whether it's hiring the wrong person or not addressing a performance issue quickly enough, issues with employees can impact entire companies in very negative ways.
As most leaders have learned from experience, there's no magic solution to avoid every possible dilemma related to talent. That being said, there are clear steps that can prevent or at least minimize the likelihood of many issues arising. To help provide some actionable insights that leaders can take away, we will cover three of the most common dilemmas related to talent, as well as the most effective way to address them.
Not everyone can get promoted. While promotions are essential for a business to continue growing, it is important for leaders to be aware of potential fallout. After passing up the employee for a promotion, spend time meeting with them to give them constructive feedback that will help them grow and encourage them to work towards future promotions. In addition to having strategies in place to support an employee's continued development, leaders also need to be ready in the event that promoting one employee results in another leaving the company.
Although promotions are generally what employees work for, they are not always able to move on when they get one. Plenty of leaders have given an employee a promotion, only to have that individual be held back as a result of continuing to do their old job and not keeping up with their new responsibilities. The best way to prevent recently promoted employees from sabotaging themselves is to ensure a successor is in place and that any outstanding responsibilities will be properly delegated.
An underperforming employee who is well-liked and a high-performing employee with an attitude that negatively impacts a company's culture are both scenarios a leader may have to face. For a current employee who falls into either of those categories, leaders should communicate their issues clearly, figure out a solution, and then continue to follow-up to ensure the employee’s behavior is improving.
How can leaders avoid having to deal with a problematic employee in the first place? Accomplishing this goal starts with hiring. One of the reasons employers choose to work with a specialized recruiting firm is to get the comprehensive screening they need. By carefully looking into both skills and personality for candidates, employers can maximize the likelihood of choosing candidates that are a good fit across the board.
By taking the time to think through potential dilemmas and proactively come up with ways to handle them, leaders can ensure they are not caught off guard when find themselves faced with such situations.
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