MANY BUSINESS LEADERS don’t seem to understand the value of talent and resources belonging to their employees, as it pertains to their potential as business leaders of the future. Some organizations hire outside managers to run their offices and the end-result is inefficiency or a lack of managerial foresight.  The following are some basic facts the management should know as they consider appointing employees to become company leaders:
  • An optional first step in appointing a manager, when promoting from within, is allowing other employees to submit nominations of who they think should be their supervisor. A nominee with the most votes for internal promotion should be considered because this shows that the majority of employees trust them and would enjoy working for them. Upper management should be careful, however, because popularity doesn’t necessarily mean good leadership; the nominee may be popular for reasons other than leadership to their fellow employees.  The interviewing panel should be composed of more than a single person because what one person may not see in the interviewee, the other may easily identify.  Also, you can be able to verify if the person has capacity to talk before a group; the panel would be an example of the larger group of employees one wishes to represent.
  • Check on the aspiring employee’s background to ascertain whether or not they have proven leadership qualities. Such information can be verified by checking what position the employee took in previous teambuilding events.  It is also important to ascertain that the person’s character is upright and sound; moral ethics should come first in an effective leader as positions of leadership often require leaders to take the hard right over the easy wrong.  
  • In addition, the nominee should be able to work well under pressure. As a leader, it will be required of the person to multitask various duties with skill and efficiency.  The person should also be very knowledgeable about the organization; factors such as the history, goals and objectives of the organization should be fully understood by the nominee.  Also, see how much the nominee knows about other employees; ask him/her what their good and bad qualities are and then how the person expects to work through them for a better organization.
  • The managerial nominee should have education qualifications to ascertain competence in the position they are vying for.  The person should have undergone extensive training in a field relevant to the position.  While education is important, however, experience and positive performance, in certain fields, is considered more important.
  • Some organizations prefer taking qualified aspirants to their own management and leadership training institutions. Here, employees can learn skills on strategy and motivation. Strategy has to do with creating an effective logical framework, work breakdown structure, and activity network that coincides with the abilities of an employee. Strategy also involves researching the market to see how the company can improve on its products and develop loyal customers, thus improving sales by bringing in new customers. Furthermore, the aspirant should be taught how to wade off competition from rival companies in an effective and ethical way. Note that what a person learns in collage is different from an organization’s management school because the organization’s teaching focuses on a single product or industry while college knowledge is general. Motivation includes how a new leader can work with employees in way that they can feel appreciated for their work. Motivation can be tricky in leadership because what one person sees as a boosting factor may not be the same for another.
  • It may also be necessary to teach management aspirants on how to restructure the office arrangement.  Restructuring can involve laying-off some employees so as to reduce the organization’s cost of operation; this should be done in such a way that the employees don’t feel abandoned. Employees should be laid off based on their lack of competence or performance and not likeability or popularity.  Nevertheless, such employees should be given a good send-off reward to appreciate their contribution to the company and not left empty-handed.  Restructuring can also take the form of inter-organizational transfer; here, the leader has to be sure that a transferred employee will still be productive in their new job. Otherwise, it would be like rotating a flat tire instead of replacing it.
  • Training aspiring employees to become decision makers will help them develop critical thinking abilities. Critical thinking involves looking at ‘three sides of a coin.’ Problem solving involves looking into all of the facets of an issue--even those that seem unlikely. Some organizations give prospective managers new responsibilities to verify their multi-tasking ability.
Training employees for company leadership requires interviewing skills. The panel should be able to shed off hidden shells so as to get to a character’s true personality.