I’m only talking to leaders today. We tend to fall into this rut. I have a position on my team. A person leaves. We need to fill that position.
Before you fill your next position, as yourself this one question:
How will this hire bring us closer to reaching our business objective?
In fact, you might want to ask that question in the interview of the candidate. How are you going to move us closer to meeting our business goals and objectives, and of course, first tell them what those are.
Too often we replace people without really seeking to understand if a certain position is really doing that. Well, we’ve always had a person in this position, so we need to replace this person. But, if that position isn’t really moving you closer to meeting your objectives, maybe it’s the right time to not hire that position, and maybe hire a new position.
Business objectives evolve and change over time. A position you needed five years ago, quite possibly might not be needed today.
I also find that what a certain position is supposed to accomplish sometimes devolves over time based on who had the position. Well, Timmy’s position was supposed to do “X”, but Timmy wasn’t very good at that, but we liked him and now Timmy’s position does “Y”. Really, so do we no longer need “X”?
If any position isn’t moving your department or business closer to your goals, it’s a position you should not be filling. We have a really difficult time as leaders not filling positions on our team that we’ve always had. We love to build our empires, not break them down. The reality is the most effective leaders don’t just backfill positions, they analyze where the real need is or isn’t in their world, and then work to make that happen.
Great leaders don’t backfill positions. Great leaders first decide is this role going to move us closer to meeting our objectives?