#268 from Innovative
Leader Volume 6, Number 3
Your Problems—for Just Two More Years!
A vice president,
who is my supervisor, will be retiring in two years.
He talks about finally having the luxury of time, and to
live in the seaside home he recently purchased.
He talks about the month-long trips abroad that his wife
has been planning. And
he talks about finally
getting away from the tremendous pressures of his office.
His mind is
almost totally focused on retirement.
That turns out to be a real problem for us. When we bring up major issues such as requesting an addition
to the building or to get approval for an important project
change, he isn’t nearly as eager to push things through as he
was previously. I
think that he just doesn’t want to be bothered.
In his mind, he’s already retired and doesn’t feel like
taking up any more battles. We
realize that it’s always difficult to argue for building funds
or for new programs; but if he doesn’t do it, there’s no
chance that they’ll come about.
In response to his hands-off attitude, we’re now less
likely to approach him with anything
major. That’s one
way to stop innovation!
Our company is in
a very competitive area, and we see our supervisor as a burden to
our success. He’s
been with the company for decades and is very well liked, so
he’s not going to be booted out if the CEO finds out about his
attitude. I’ll bet
the CEO already knows about it, but just can’t get himself to
deal strictly with the VP, as they’ve worked closely together
for a long time.
Wouldn’t it be
great if he took the time now to mentor someone, or several
people, so they will learn the ropes of getting things done
through the management committee?
Things would get done, or at least seriously considered,
and we’d be eager to work harder and stretch ourselves.
That’s one way to stimulate innovation!