Below is an article that I wrote for the Des Moines Business Record on Talent Management. Specifically on how to manage and help your up-and-comers.
There is one nice thing about working and living in America – OK, actually there are a few nice things. But one in particular is an individual’s ability to pursue his or her dream. With the right determination and skills, someone who starts in the mailroom could someday end up in the CEO’s office. Or someone who starts on the manufacturing floor a few years later ends up being the production manager running the floor.
There are tons of examples of how this plays out daily in America’s work force. The only requirements to participate are to have a dream, a solid work ethic and the right attitude. Although, with these scenarios there is a problem that might not be evident at first but eventually becomes more apparent.
The problem is twofold. First, companies believe that because someone is great at one thing, he or she will be great at another. For example, some companies believe that if someone is great at sales, he or she should be the sales manager. That is terrible thinking, because it assumes that the person would be a great manager of people. In the case of sales, if people are great at selling, let them sell and leave them where they are.