Let’s talk about the Peter Principle.
Stated simply, it’s the idea that, in a hierarchy – where the best performers at one level of the hierarchy are chosen to rise to the next level – every person eventually rises to his or her level of incompetence.
Nobody wants that.
If your boss does not invest time in mentoring you, you must take charge of your own success and development. Begin by articulating a vision for your future. Be clear about your values, commitments, passions, goals and aspirations. Don’t merely think about these things. Write them down. The discipline of expressing these ideas in writing is challenging, and it can be frustrating, but it leads to clarity. That foundation then acts as your true north, providing you with a basis for making sound decisions and having high quality conversations with people who can contribute to your success.
Rita was promoted to her first management role because she was a smart, hardworking problem solver. But when she stepped into a role focused on leading others, the majority of her work became about helping other people to be successful and navigating complex relationships. When this shift occurred, Rita didn’t know exactly where to start. She read articles that said, “do this and don’t do that” – for instance “don’t micromanage” and “build trust with your employees” – but it was hard to know where and how to start putting that advice into practice effectively.
The decision to cultivate a people-first culture is a strategic decision rather than a project. Because it is not a project, you will never be done. You will always improve and refine the way you implement your people-first culture. If you’re thinking about embarking on this journey, I hope you’ll find this post helpful.
From time to time in your career you’ll confront the challenge of adjusting to a new boss. In many cases, this will be a situation you did not seek. Suddenly, you find yourself forced into a new relationship in which the other person (your new boss) has considerably more power than you do. Here are some tips for adjusting to a new boss.