A few weeks ago, we blogged about “The Top 5 Characteristics of Exceptional Leaders and Managers.” Well, as good as those leaders and managers might be, they also make a big mistake—to one degree or another.
In fact, this is the biggest mistake that ALL leaders make, according to the article “The 5 Biggest Mistakes All Leaders Make” by Geoff Smart, Randy Street, and Alan Foster on the Time.com website. According to that article, what is the number-one most common mistake holding leaders back?
The complete inability to remove under-performers from their organization.
Not only that, but the article also identifies the top five reasons that leaders are unable to bring themselves to remove under-performers—or at least remove them in a timely fashion.
Those five reasons are as follows:
#1—They’re eternal optimists.
#2—They don’t want to “rock the boat.”
#3—They dislike conflict.
#4—They don’t want to look badly.
#5—They’re procrastinators by nature.
But wait! That’s right—there’s more. According to the authors’ exhaustive research, executives who excel at removing under-performers from their teams are more than twice as likely to enjoy a successful career than other leaders.
The reasons are fairly obvious, starting with the following two:
- Those executives are no longer spending time and effort on the employees, thus freeing up those resources for other things.
- Those executives likely replaced the employees with top candidates who turned into better, more productive employees.
How have you fared as a leader in this category? Have you been able to remove under-performing employees in a timely fashion? More importantly, were you able to replace them with top candidates?
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