Thoughts From the Coffee Table: “I really like her as a person, but…”
I was talking through employee issues with a client, prepping her for her first performance reviews. She kept using phrases like “He’s really nice, but…” “She is a good worker, but…” “He doesn’t cause any problems, but…”
I let her go on for a bit and finally jumped in. “Are you concerned that people will think you are out to get them?” She looked confused.
We talked through how “being nice” has nothing to do with whether or not the person is performing their job to expectations. And that coaching and developing your team isn’t a reflection of your own “nice” factor. She got it.
Being able and willing to develop your team takes guts, focus and patience. It can make you feel vulnerable as a leader. Because you are making another person feel vulnerable.
Confidence is the bridge, for you and for them. Confidence to stand out, have the tough discussions, but do so with respect and vision. Show your employee where they will be and what they can achieve, and measure their willingness to do the work to get them there.
You might feel like you are doing a handstand in Central Park, with everyone watching. Then again, you are doing something not everyone is willing, and able, to do.
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