Are you staging your potential team leaders for success? What do you need to do differently?
Let me borrow the term "staging" from its real estate context. Do you throw new team leaders to the wolves or do you stage them for success?
Lawrence Peter’s book The Peter Principle argues that, in a hierarchy people tend to be promoted to the level of their incompetence. He noted that although this is not planned it is the unintended consequence. You get a promotion usually because you performed well in a previous job. Some very important reasons exist for doing this. Rewards encourage engagement and increased performance.
Inevitably, according to the Peter Principle, the person ends up being promoted to a job where they are no longer competent. This is referred to as their "level of incompetence". The employee has no chance of further promotion, thus reaching his or her career's ceiling in an organization.
We can see examples of The Peter Principle in many of our businesses. It can certainly happen in real estate sales. As an example, the top producer is now the team leader. By the way, I think this is a good thing as long as management training and preparation takes place.
For example, let’s say the Harry is a very successful individual performer. He out sells everyone else. He consistently wins awards. He is the star and you wish there were more. One day a team leader leaves or retires and ownership decides to make Harry the new team leader. Why not? He is the top performer. Consider these two questions.
• What knowledge and skills has Harry used that made him a top performer?
• What skills must Harry now have to be a team leader?
I would certainly encourage the practice of promoting Harry. However, if you do nothing more to assist Harry then you are setting him up for failure. The skills that Harry used to create his sales are much different than those of inspiring and leading others to do the same.
This skill curve below illustrates this point.
As we see in the illustration, to be effective as an individual performer you must utilize about 90% technical expertise with only 10% people skills.
However, at the next level in the organizational structure, the supervisory level, the curve makes its most dramatic shift, and the necessary knowledge and skills you now need to be effective on the job is about half and half. You still need a great deal of job knowledge—to train, to substitute, etc.; but, now your Number 1 responsibility is developing other people—to develop other high performing workers, to teach, to lead, and to manage.
Then, as you can see from the shift in the upper levels, the higher you go in the corporate ladder, the less you need technical skills, and the more you need good, effective management and human relations skills. At the management levels, more behavioral and management skills are required for your success.
Most people can move up that chain but they need preparation, training, and development. Are you staging your potential team leaders for success? What do you need to do differently? For a similar post on our web site see WHEN DO YOU BECOME INCOMPETENT?
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