Below is a leadership tip from the book: “Toy Box Leadership”
Almost all us make the mistake of forcing a relationship that just isn’t right. When you force a square peg into a round hole, wrong personalities find the wrong positions. I read the the other day that Southwest Airlines have the best “out front” people serving customers and the best technical people teaching employees, resulting in everyone naturally fitting where they belong. We must continue to let people know the importance and value of the job their doing no matter how large are small. On the other hand, creating an unnecessary position for someone just to keep them onboard is not in anyone’s best interest either. If the position is not valuable to the company, remove it, but never demean the individual or their position in the process.
You may have heard the funny story about a four-star general who was flying over the Atlantic when his plane stopped for refueling in Iceland. The general was in a hurry, and when the process was taking longer than anticipated, he went to chew out the personnel involved in delaying him. He found a private who had finished fueling the plane and was now draining the toilets through a large hose. In a loud, threatening tone, the general began to criticize his job performance. The private interrupted and said, “Excuse me, sir, I’m a private, I’m stuck in Iceland in the winter, and I’m pumping sewage from an airplane. What can you possibly do to me that’s any worse?”
Sometimes we feel like that private, and sometimes leaders act like that general. Neither is healthy for the organization. Do not force anyone to fill a role against their wishes. If they do not embrace the changed role, the organization may not be able to retrain them, but forcing a fit is misery for all parities involved.