3 Critical Steps to Take Before Changing Departmental Leadership by Haris Ahmed of Chicago
According to Haris Ahmed, Chicago change expert and leadership consultant, one of the issues that always comes up whenever he gets tasked to investigate internal operations by his clients is employee performance. Simply put, the effectiveness and efficiency of internal operations are, for the most part, hampered by how employees do their specific jobs. The hard truth is that not everyone on the team will meet your expectations, and often, this only becomes apparent after considerable time has passed. Most of the time, says Haris Ahmed of Chicago, employees put their best foot forward during their first months with the company. It is when adverse situations arise that you will see everyone’s fight or flight response.
What happens when someone you entrusted with a leadership role fails to live up to expectations?
This is where CEOs and/or business owners will need to step in. As the top leaders of the organization, they must decide on the best course of action for the entire organization. The decision-making process requires careful thought and analysis because changing organizational leaders will affect not only the department or team directly involved, but overall operations as well. Here Haris Ahmed of Chicago shares the top three critical steps for making a more informed and educated decision, and mitigate risks that could arise from such internal actions.
Haris Ahmed of Chicago recommends the following steps:
1. Perform a thorough investigation
While knowing all the facts before making the decision on whether to change departmental leadership may seem like it should be automatic, you might be surprised at how little thought is given to this crucial step. Sometimes, changing leaders is based solely on others’ opinions or feedback. While Haris Ahmed of Chicago is not saying that opinions and feedback should be completely disregarded, they also shouldn’t be the sole basis for removing someone from his or her leadership position.
Do your own investigation and background check; and if possible, observe the leader in question incognito; that is, without blatantly letting on that they are being observed.
2. Listen to both sides
There is always two sides to a story, says Haris Ahmed of Chicago, and it is your job to hear both sides to be fair. If an employee is underperforming, for instance, there could be another underlying reason and not merely because of a failure in leadership. Get to the bottom of the truth first, and then talk to the leader involved about your own observations and the feedback of his or her subordinates.
3. Make a lateral transfer, internal promotion, or bring someone in from the outside
This third step is one of the hardest to decide on, in the opinion of Haris Ahmed of Chicago. Before you decide to bring someone in—a new player that you’re looking to hire, it’s important to check within your organization first if there are key personnel who can take on the job. For this, you may need to perform a major organizational restructuring. Haris Ahmed of Chicago believes that getting someone from within your organization is a good move because you have already trained these people, and they are already familiar with the company’s mission, vision, and culture.
In the end though, your choice should be what you deem is best for the organization.