In my last post I shared that in December I injured my right index finger and it’ll be out of commission for a couple of months. Don’t ask how, it’s embarrassing. A neighbor’s six year old asked me how it happened and I told him, “Fighting a wombat.” His eyes got real big and he asked if there were wombats in our building. I told him, “Not any more.” But I digress.
Losing the use of your most important finger on your dominant hand causes one to have to find new ways to do almost everything. I rely on my right hand for a lot and my index finger more than I do the other fingers. Sort of like the manager who relies too much on one staff member and doesn’t develop the rest of the team. I’ve had to learn how to do things with my left hand and the other fingers on my right. It’s been an annoyance and an education.
Now what about that manager who relies too much on one staff member? What happens when that person becomes injured from overwork or gets frustrated and quits? This is more than an annoyance or an inconvenience. The manager who relies too much on one superstar performer, no matter how good he or she is, and neglects developing the skills and abilities of the other fingers, I mean staff, is doing the organization a major disservice. My left hand has gotten a crash course in lifting, washing, buttoning button and many other ADL’s (Activities of Daily Living). If there are typos in this post, blame my left hand.
Leaders need to ensure that every staff person is ready to step up and do the job. Waiting until you lose your most valuable performer to start training back-ups is no way to run a business. Take it from me, Ron “Lefty” Katz.