Star performer Santa became a manager and got a subordinate for the very first time. Santa was excited and thrilled. Santa was anticipating that now life will be balanced. Santa will assign part of his work to the subordinate and will have time for himself. Dreams are scenic pictures that only show desirable aspects of reality. Preeto was an hour late to the office on her first day. Santa reprimanded her that he will not tolerate any indiscipline. Santa got a feedback that he does not know how to talk to ladies. Santa was shocked.
Santa gave her the first assignment to prepare a data sheet. Preeto said that she does not have competence to do the given work. Instead Preeto asked Santa to regularize her attendance and approve her loan application. Santa refused to do so. Preeto went to the supervisor of Santa and complained about Santa. The star performer got the feedback to behave with maturity. Star performers often take more time to transform into managers. Star performers expect others to behave like them and thus try to control behaviour of others. Control sooner or later translates into revolt.
Santa decided to have another discussion with his supervisor Banta. Santa explained that Preeto is refusing assignments. Banta told that Preeto feels that you are giving her data entry and analytics job, which is not her strength. Santa explained that majority of his job entails data entry and analytics and he would like someone to share that load. Banta pointed out that Logistics and Stakeholder engagement is an important aspect of Santa’s job. Preeto is good at both and that is why Preeto was aligned to Santa. Our preferences are not necessarily our strengths. Santa said that he would like to do manage logistics and stakeholders himself and needs someone for analytics.
Preeto was reassigned and Santa got a new subordinate. Bunty was interviewed and selected by Santa. After couple of months Banta observed that Santa is still spending lot of time at office. Banta asked that why Santa is not delegating work to Bunty. Santa found that it takes longer to explain things to someone than to do things oneself. Hence Santa gives some work to Bunty but most of the work is still done by Santa. Banta quoted that I can do it faster, is the first delegation roadblock.
Santa said that is not the only reason. I do not have belief that Bunty will be able to deliver the same quality of work. Banta smiled that I can do it better, is the second delegation roadblock. Important aspect of supervisor job is to review and provide feedback to subordinate on areas of improvement rather than doing work of the subordinate one self. Nice supervisors who avoid provide feedback, are hindrances to the development of their subordinates.
Banta called out the third delegation roadblock, which was immediately recognized by Santa. What will happen to my job if I delegate, is the third delegation roadblock. Santa said that the thought crossed his mind several times and his own insecurities did not allow him to delegate. Banta advised that one has to create bandwidth to take more responsibilities. Santa never realized that he himself was the biggest roadblock on his growth path.
Insecurity, the third delegation roadblock creates the first two roadblocks. Most of the times first time managers’ end up hiring mediocre talent rather than hiring someone better than themselves. If they hire someone better than themselves in the first place; subordinates will be able to do things faster and better. Stars shine better together.