Devote Time to Your High Performers

November 2, 2017

By Mark David

When people act heroically, treat them as heroes. ~ Jeff Goforth

Tough time constraints on today’s managers make it virtually impossible to devote an equal amount of time to every team member. In an effort to increase overall performance, most managers tend to devote more time to improving their underachievers—but I always advise spending more time leveraging your high-performers. Here’s why: High-performers usually comprise only twenty to thirty percent of your team, but you can count on them to provide a better return on the time you invest in them. For starters, high performers will help you set the standard of performance for your entire team. They model the type of behavior and excellence you desire, thereby helping you show low-performers the way it’s done. They also help you attract other high-performers to your company. While high-performers tend to be self-motivating, it’s a mistake to take them for granted. They are your heroes, so be sure to make time to sincerely acknowledge, honor and celebrate them. A good rule of thumb is “hire slowly, but fire quickly.” This is not meant to sound harsh or uncaring. It simply means that you should take the necessary time to attract and hire quality people who are a great cultural fit for your company. Then give them the training and mentoring they need to become high-performers. And if they do not rise to the opportunity, don’t wait; they must be de-hired in a reasonable amount of time—for everyone’s sake, including theirs.

Excerpt from The New Coaching Illustrated

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