Invincible Monday – Tough Decisions


“You can’t make decisions based on fear and the possibility of what might happen.” ~ Michelle Obama

Making tough decisions is not easy. In one of my management positions in the corporate arena, I had to decide to let a direct report go. The company had changed the job requirements for that particular position. Training was provided to all the current employees to get them up to speed on their new responsibilities.

Yet this direct report was struggling in the position and falling behind on key projects. Although, we sat down and worked out a 90-day performance improvement plan (PIP), his performance did not improve. In fact, more clients were complaining at the end of the first 30 days of his PIP period.

His performance also affected his teammates. They had to shoulder more of the work due to his reduced output and inability to master the skills required to get the job done. It was stressful on the entire team. I knew I had no other choice but to release him from the position.

I informed the Human Resources representative of my intent. I informed her that the employee was a great person. He arrived at work on-time. He was very pleasant and respectful of others. She agreed with me that we would release him. We also agreed to include a note in his file that states he would be able to reapply for the position, should he improve his skills.

Making this tough decision was very difficult and stressful. I thought about the impact of this decision on him and his family. But I had to look at the big picture: his performance was affected the company’s clients, the image of the company and his teammates.

At the time I informed him of the decision, I told him that I admire him as person. This was a very difficult decision. I allowed him to share his thoughts and offer to write a recommendation letter for him based upon his current skills set.

As a leader, you will be faced with making tough decisions. Before you do here are some tips to help you:

1) Sit down and weigh the pros and cons of making this decision

2) Determine how will it affect others around you

3) Create a plan will you to keep moving forward towards your goals based on this decision

4) Identify and enlist the assistance of key people in carrying out your plan

It may be tough making difficult decisions, but it doesn’t have to be ugly. Do it with the proper ethic, be respectful of all involved and be honest. Good News: The former employee was able to find another job that he liked. We are still in contact with each other, today.

Here is to your success in leadership on Invincible Monday.

Get your copy of Live a Diamond Life, Live a Life of Purpose: Diamond Cutters, today. Find out how my mentors and coaches helped me to be a better person, and how to apply these principles to your life.

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