Promoting Employees To Middle Management
To be, or not to be...friends; that may be the question, but when one of the team is promoted to management, the answer is not easy. This topic comes up often, as we are a profession that believes in rearing our own. As the veterinary practice grows, there becomes a need to organize personnel. This typically means moving the “best” employees into positions of leadership, whether they want it or not. This person often doesn’t know what to expect or have the prior training to know how to do the job. To make matters worse, the team doesn’t know what to expect either. This can lead to a tension-filled team and plenty of turmoil.
Then they privately approach the person, who now needs to try to determine if they want the opportunity to make a buck more (by the way, just like none of us are here for the money, it’s guaranteed that this raise will Not compensate for the move up!). If the person agrees, reluctantly or not, the team is told that they now have a new “boss.” They may not be told why there needs to be a supervisor, what the supervisor will be doing, why s/he was selected for the job, or how things will change. Looking at it this way, it’s easy to see why the team balks and pushes back, and things can go downhill quick!
Here is a quick checklist to follow when creating or revising the middle management level:
- Team meeting to discuss why this position is being creating, or is being filled by someone new.
- Discuss what this person needs to do and/or continue doing to help the team.
- Announce the position to entire team, before posting outside practice.
- Follow a consistent, comprehensive, and fair recruiting interviewing and hiring process.
The biggest advice: Even if you think no one on the current team can do the job, you must allow them the opportunity to step up and apply for the job. If your needs are consistent with your hiring policy, based on skill, experience, education, they won’t survive the cut anyways; but if not at least given the opportunity, you will have some very unhappy people on the team!