By Michael Holland

One year left.  That’s all.  Then you can you can retire or start the new role in the division or go to the blah, blah, blah opportunity.  You’ve been laying low and avoiding all conflicts within the team you lead.  No sense starting a battle with so little time left.  No sense wasting your precious energy dealing with those two horrible managers.  You think “it’s best for the next guy to take care of that problem.”

It’s most likely true that no one will call you out on your lack of engagement with your role during your final time in a job.  In fact, many people won’t know your plans or timing.

But they will see the impact of your lack of leadership and here are 5 ways you’ll screw up your team and employees.

  • Amplified Bad Behavior – Those folks who need to be coached up – or out – will take full advantage of the freedom to behave any way they darn well please.  And if they are in management the negative ripple will be huge.
  • Lost Productivity – A team’s productivity is a magical ether that can drive huge profit to the bottom line or huge losses and is directly related to how well or poorly they are led.
  • Time to Recover – The harm to your team will run for a longer time period after you’re gone than for the time you’ve checked out.  Let’s call it a 2x factor.  The new guy will therefore need to invest even more time and energy to get the team heading in the right direction and fully productive.
  • Reinforcement of Them vs Us – Employees will see yet another example of highly paid, entitled brats taking advantage of the system and keeping employees down while never following through on their promises.
  • Lowered Standards – Aspiring managers will see your behavior – that is tolerated and likely supported – to be the standard to which they should work in their management careers.  A cycle of mediocrity will ensue.

You can choose the way you want to lead, that is your prerogative.  But remember this:  real people are coming to work each day making less than 35% of what you earn while putting in a full day of work.  Real people will be there after you leave and they are the ones who will keep the lights on at the company doing the work that is required.

You are earning a boatload of money to do a job that you signed up for so I’ll call you out now and say “Hey, you.  Come down from your perch and lead your team every minute of every hour of every day until your job has concluded.  Or stand aside now, give up your money and let someone who cares take on the role.”

Coaching Thoughts – For You and Your Peers

  • Have you ever checked out or retired on the job early?  What were the drivers for you?
  • Which of the 5 impacts listed do you agree with the most or disagree with the most?  Grab a peer manager and discuss your thoughts.
  • Have you worked for a boss in this situation?  What do you observe among your peers?