Are You Guilty of Hanging onto the Wrong People?

Irrespective of the financial climate, one of biggest mistakes I’ve seen CEOs, MDs and presidents make over the last three decades is hanging onto the wrong people in the futile hope they will improve.

They never do – and the longer you keep them on board the more they are dragging the business down both emotionally, by draining the energy and resource of fellow team members, and financially, by impacting on your company’s profitability and effectiveness.

As an experienced business strategist and performance coach operating across the UK, US and further afield, I’ve also witnessed how not taking action to jettison under-performers can seriously undermine a leader’s credibility – with their team and their customers.

If the situation drags on too long your team will question your decision making powers and your mental toughness – or lack thereof – and their confidence in you will start to erode.

Some bosses mistakenly think it is in their customers’ best interests to sustain continuity by keeping the same person on their customers’ respective accounts.

In the meantime, their customers are wondering why they have someone who is below par supposedly looking after them, which in turn can spark them to doubt whether you, as the business owner, really have their best interests at heart.

The importance of recruiting and building an outperforming team is essential to the future of the business – the two remain inextricably linked.

Starting with your top team, answer the following questions:

◾ How confident are you that your top team can deliver your 2013 plan?

◾ How are they performing against their targets and Key Performance Indicators?

◾ What tools do you use to assess your top people?

◾ How effective are these tools?

Here’s a simple tool to help you find out – the Capability Matrix.

On a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 is poor and 5 is very good rate each member of your top team on the following:






Within a matter of minutes you know who the weakest link is and whether or not your top team is going to deliver and turbo-charge your business.

Now comes the tough part, what are you going to do about what you’ve discovered?

Doing nothing is not an option.

For help progressing this exercise and taking the first steps to ensure you have the right people on the bus – and in the right seats – e-mail me via, send me a tweet via @RichardWhatIf on Twitter find me on LinkedIn.or visit

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