A reader writes:
My manager quit earlier this year, leaving me to run the marketing department with a woman we’d just hired.
I wasn’t in favor of the hire because I was concerned that she lacks professional maturity, but now she’s my co-director and we’re making do. They’re not replacing my manager, and there’s been no conversation about how our roles have changed or what our strategic direction forward looks like—we’re just barging ahead. My problem is this: She’s hardworking, cheerful, and bright—and absolutely incapable of saying “no” to any request. Whether it’s another director, a member of the senior team, or even (not making this up) a janitor with another “great idea” for improving the web site, she’s on board and happy to make it happen. Web cams on the roof? Sure! Amateur photo contest? Why not! Some of the projects have been great, but most just clutter up the site and create huge amounts of work for me, because she doesn’t think about how her “happy to do it” attitude drags me into hours of editing work for unproven ideas that sound like fun and then backfire in big ways. Our more boring, but important, work falls by the wayside, and our numbers are suffering because she won’t focus on fundamentals.
We now report to someone off-site, and he’s as hands-off as can be. How can I work with her to make her understand that we need to make decisions as a team, and that her decisions set precedents for expectations we can’t undo?
You can read my answer to this question over at the Intuit QuickBase blog today.
Plus, three other careers experts are answering this question there today too. Head on over there for answers…