People in the Middle Do the Actual Work
“You don’t start at the top if you want to find the story. You start in the middle, because it’s the people in the middle who do the actual work in the world.”
– Malcolm Gladwell, journalist and bestselling author
Unfortunately, many companies spent the past decade diverting resources from middle management, creating a talent vacuum that has proved difficult to fill. Without proper development, a company’s most valuable assets – their people – can derail and fall short of performance expectations. There are four ways companies get managing their middle managers wrong:
1) They promote the wrong people. Many organizations rely on performance appraisals and supervisor nominations to identify and promote talented individuals rather than objective measures.
2) They don’t effectively train them. Most companies focus their development efforts at the extremes of their management hierarchies rather than honing in on the central figures – the middle managers.
3) They stress them out. The shift to more flat organizational structures has placed the lion’s share of pressure and accountability on the shoulders of middle managers.
4) They let them disengage. In a 2007 study, 41% of HR leaders said engagement among mid-level managers had dropped noticeably over the previous 18 months.
How can organizations turn their underperforming middle managers into a group of competent, engaged leaders? Find out in our ebook, 4 Ways Companies Are Failing Their Middle Managers And Why It’s Killing Innovation.