Are We Teaching People to Do or Develop?

March 3, 2010 - Mac Lake - Leadership Development

It’s simple to teach a new employee to do a job because they’re motivated to learn, they want to please you, and they find personal significance from performing well. So you tell them what you want done, they do it, you redirect where they may be off course and eventually they get it and they become a valuable contributor- a good ‘Doer” for the organization. This works well until they leave, then we have to start over again.

When we start someone out on a new job we aren’t thinking about who they will develop or how they will replace themselves, we just want the job done. But what if we changed our approach. What if we talked to them about developing others from day one…no from before day one. What if we talked to them about being a “Developer” rather than a “Doer” during the interview process. What if we told them we were hiring them not just to do a job but to teach others to do their job. What if we put developing others in their job description. What if a portion of their performance review was based on how well they’re developing others. This could radically change our culture over the course of time.

Are you teaching people to be “Doers” or “Developers”?

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Mac Lake


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