Talk about skills to develop colleagues

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Talk About Skills When Talking About Promotions

Leadership Tip of the week #78

adapted from HBR

Conversations about promotions can be tense — both for the person asking and for you, the manager.

Your first instinct might be to consider whether the employee is a “good fit” for the new role, but it’s better to focus on their skills.

Ask yourself, What will the person need to do the job well? Then communicate the answer to your employee. For example, you might say: “You would need to develop expertise with Tableau,” or Excel, or giving presentations.

That is a far simpler message to deliver than “I don’t know if you’re equipped to be a manager yet.”

By breaking down the role into the required skills, you’ll demystify the promotion and make it more attainable for the employee.

Plus, a request to learn new skills is much easier, and quicker, for you to grant.

Adapted from “How to Support Employees’ Learning Goals While Getting Day-to-Day Stuff Done,” Nick Gidwani

Author: Andrew Mann

Managing Partner at NorthBailey. Having had senior marketing & insight roles at Tesco, Sainsbury's, Asda, Coop and M&S, I'm now using my experience & network to solve strategic marketing problems for NorthBailey clients

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