A timely post and a good reminder today from Jay Goltz in his Thinking Entrepreneur blog. Jay talks about how the best way to grow your sales and take your company “to the next level” is by letting go of the lower performing people – those whom he calls “the sixes” on a scale of one to ten. Firing people is never easy and involves those things which make most people uncomfortable: change and uncertainty. However difficult it may be to confront people who are not the right person for your company or team, it is admittedly much more damaging to the company and morale to keep them around. We all know this, acting on this knowledge is another thing altogether.
A mentor of mine once said: “Grasp the nettles like a man of mettle.” This analogy is sage advice, especially when dealing with staffing decisions. It is interesting to note that if you do indeed grasp a nettle plant swiftly and firmly, you will crush the nettles that would have stung you if you had grabbed the plant gingerly. Sort of counter intuitive, right? It takes mettle to sell, it takes mettle to run a sales organization, it takes mettle to start a business and yes, it takes mettle to let people go.
Jay sums it up perfectly when he says: “Here’s the real test: What would your visceral response be if they quit? Relief? I think that says it all.” Yes Jay, it does.