Your top performer: dependable, a fast-learner, never puts out less than the best. But be careful: Could you unknowingly be alienating this MVP?
Here are four mistakes many managers make when it comes to the cream of their crop:
- Mistake #1: They assume top performers can handle anything you throw at them. Yes, there’s a reason this person is your go-to guy or gal. But there’s a limit to how much anyone can handle. And your superstar may not speak up when he or she is overloaded. The very drive for perfection that makes Melissa such a valuable staffer may also keep her from raising a hand.
- Mistake #2: They don’t offer enough encouragement. Remember when your superstar started with you? You probably offered kudos-a-plenty. But are you still taking the time to tell James what a great job he did on that report? You’ll see a major motivation drop if star staffers feel taken for granted. You may have to stretch your brain to say something new, but try and point out the positive at least once a week.
- Mistake #3: They give co-workers a pass. Your top performers usually give 110%, but if they feel like you’re letting peers slide when they don’t measure up, you’re going to have a resentful star. Not every staffer has the same capabilities, but some equity of standards is a must.
- Mistake #4: They assume “bigger and better” is always better. Most managers are quick to fast-track superstars to a management path, but that might not necessarily be something they’re interested in. Better to ask if supervisor is a role this person really wants to step into. If not, be ready to find other ways to spread this person’s good influence: mentoring new staffers, serving as departmental rep in company-wide committees, etc.