As an entrepreneur, you start the business and over a period of time grow it. There comes a time in this journey that growing further becomes a challenge and you need to take on board an expert who will manage a particular business function for you; as the business grows beyond your personal capacity to manage.
Naturally, you start searching for a senior person to staff this emerging need. Since the position is at senior level; you need person with requisite qualifications as well as with years of relevant experience; which will make you comfortable to handover the responsibilities in a particular area to him and take the business ahead. You generally succeed in getting the desired person in your immediate personal or professional network. The person comes on boardand starts working and there starts discomfort.
You suddenly start comparing the new person’s managing style with your working style, and you start finding differences there. Some are useful while some are not matching with your working style. This creates a turbulence. You start feeling that the new person is not managing the work the way you would have managed, in your own way you try to correct the new person’s working style by giving decisions in the new person’s area of responsibility. This creates friction, and you suddenly realise that you are not only doing your work; but also are taking over lot of work which the new person is supposed to do.While the new person feels that he is not getting freedom to work due to your involvement in his area of working. This is a typical phenomenon.
If you have seen the game of badminton, lawn tennis or table tennis; you will see that there are two formats of the game – one is singles and the other is doubles. Seldom you will find that the singles and doubles champions are same. Also the temperament required to play single or doubles match is different.
In a singles match; you are playing on your personal skill. You have the entire area available to play, your strategy involves only you and your skills. You alone are responsible for the actions as well as rewards.
What happens in doubles match?
Suddenly there are two players playing from the same team. Now you are supposed to work as a team; which means apart from your strength, you also need to know the strengths of other person. You need to decide on the area from where you and your teammate will operate from. In spite of this both of you are clear that you will have to handle shots in area which is common. With a partner getting added in the game the responsibility is shared, but the rules have changed and so is the operating territory. It calls for more co-ordinated efforts as well as utilising the partner’s strengths to play for win.
Is it not the same happening – when you are taking a senior person on board to manage a business function which is handled by you as an owner?
The change is similar to playing a singles match to doubles match. If this is the case – how many times we make an effort to understand the strengths and working style of each other, which will compliment in getting better results.
Do we realise that no matter how well we will define the area of responsibility among each other – there will always be an area (just like the area in doubles match) which will be a “no man’s land” – how we will manage the challenges in this area? How we will keep the other person updated on the same. How you will review the working for better understanding of each other’s capabilities and for getting better results. If you fail to do this there will be frustration at both ends.
While hiring senior positions and taking them on board is an important event for any organisation. At this point the rules of the game change and you need to move from a position of an individual champion to a team performer; which is a new challenge to face. You need to prepare well to win the game.
Hence the question, “Are you ready to play the doubles match?”