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Leadership Among Idiots

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The Learning Spotlight John Grubbs Ball

I hate my job…

By John Grubbs

…as a supervisor and there is nothing I can really do about it.  I accepted this promotion to supervisor because I need to improve things for my family.  I can’t stand confrontation and don’t like dealing with other people’s problems.  I don’t really know what I am doing, I haven’t received much training and I am simply “winging it” almost daily.  No one told me that supervision would be like this and I am not sure what I should do next.  If I admit the truth, I will be viewed as a failure and the company will never offer me another opportunity in the future.  I really liked my “old job” and the company is not a bad place to work.  I can’t see myself doing this job for the rest of my career.

Unfortunately, this is an extremely common reality for most organizations.  Good people with the capability to perform are promoted to positions that they are not prepared for and often dislike tremendously.  Think about the transition and the significant challenge of changing roles.

Too often, great employees are made into average or below average supervisors.  Most companies assume that because the person was good at their job they will make a good supervisor.  Most of the time, this is farthest from the truth.  These employees are accustomed to being proficient in their work are now made mediocre by the promotion. 

These underperformers are afraid to admit that they either don’t like the new job or feel overwhelmed by the expectations as a supervisor.  This stress causes them to replicate whatever model for supervision that they consider to be successful from their own experience.  In other words, they will simply replicate what is familiar rather than what is truly effective.

In truth, the transition to a leadership position can be very challenging and so many companies invest little to nothing to promote success at this critical career point.  They simply “hope” the talented individual performs well in the new role.   While “hope” is positive, running a vital and successful business requires a bit more effort and investment.

Please share your thoughts:  john@gci4training.com

Happy Mother's Day! 

"God couldn't be everywhere, so he created mothers" ~Jewish Proverb