I Just Can’t Take The Risk...

Over the last decade, I’ve seen dozens of situations where a senior or incredibly skilled team member has chosen not to exceed expectations. The challenge in most of those instances really boiled down to that team member actually choosing to not even meet the expectations the organization (or business owner, or their team members) had clearly defined for the role they were in.

As we looked at how failing to exceed, or even meet, expectations can impact customer retention and the organization’s overall profitability through the last several posts, it was extremely clear that average performance won’t be what separates any of our businesses from the competition. This is just as true when it comes to the culture we build internally - how tasks get done even when a customer will likely never have direct exposure to them…

Let’s be honest, highly skilled team members are hard to come be regardless of the ups and downs of the economy. That often results in the business owner or manager feeling quite a bit of reluctance to have firm conversations with those senior team members and/or highly skilled folks when they’re missing the mark in a given area. The what if’s can quickly outweigh the potential for resolving the issue!

In The Infinite Game, Simon Sinek compared one of the issues he was addressing to “an infection that festers over time.” Avoiding poor or mediocre performance from those who are viewed in the organization as top-tier employees, by their peers or the management team, truly fits Sinek’s example!

Over the next several days, we’ll take a look at the direct and indirect repercussions this can have throughout our entire teams. For how though, I’ll share that this is something we address very candidly in the first lesson of our Emerging Leader Development course. The example I use speaks to how that “infection” festers until it either poisons the entire body or there’s an explosion… By the way, we also follow that example with some very specific and practical steps that can be taken to prevent that from ever happening…

If you’re one of the hundred or so folks who will be joining us tomorrow (Friday, November 13) for the final virtual LIVE2LEAD:Harrisonburg experience of 2020, you’ll get to hear some great examples of how Alan Mulally dealt with situations like this as CEO for Boeing and Ford...

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