What are you doing to stop the diligent pursuit of mediocrity in your business?
The toughest test of a manager is not how they deal with poor performance — it’s how they address mediocrity.
I’ve been struck over the years watching executives opine in public about the need for “accountability” and “high performance,” then complain helplessly in private about one or two middling members of their own team. You have no moral authority to ask other managers to hold people accountable if you’re not doing so yourself. Are you sure you’re doing enough to push for high performance? What do you do when someone’s work is good but not great? How many employees do you have whose performance isn’t bad enough for termination, but whom you’d pass on if you could get a do-over on hiring them?
Unfortunately, if you’re hoping for a silver bullet to address a mediocre performer, I have little to offer. Chronic mediocrity is a symptom of ineffective leadership, not anemic personnel.
More of the Harvard Business Review post from Joseph Grenny