Yesterday, I posted a casual conversation about something I have observed as a fatal flaw in most organizations, the flaw is failing to think forward about succession. The biggest constraint to most companies is the lack of managerial talent. We get so tied up in getting production out the door, we forget about sustaining that momentum beyond the month, the quarter, the year.
In the posted conversation, I did not specifically describe where this accountability lies, nor its mechanics. In short order, I received an email from a colleague, clarifying the situation.
“It is NOT the accountability of a manager ‘to find and build a person as your replacement’ – that is the accountability of a manager’s manager, the Manager-once-Removed (MoR). Immediate managers are to be held accountable to coach subordinate employees ‘in role.’ MoRs are to be held accountable to ‘mentor’ subordinates-once-removed (SoR) related to career planning and potential advancement. MoRs should be held accountable to
- learn if SoRs seek advancement, and
- judge their future potential capability to determine if one could, in fact, have the requisite capability to work at a higher level.