How To Coach Your Star Employees Into Powerful Leaders

As a manager, it’s easy to focus more of your supervisory time on underperforming employees and let your best employees keep fulfilling their duties. You figure since the best employees don’t need your extra attention, you can focus on the ones who really need it. This sounds wonderful and perfect, but the truth is: all employees need attention and to be managed. No matter how amazing they are. Letting your best employees “fly under the radar”, so to speak, leaves them feeling frustrated, unmotivated, and not challenged. Use these proven ways to turn your A-players into powerful leaders:

Help them progress

Even the best of the best performers need feedback and guidance. They put in the hard work and the effort because they want to progress to a higher role in the future. It is your job as a manager to mold them and help them reach that goal. Do you even know what your star employees want for their future? If not, hold a quick one-on-one to discuss what they want out of their career and figure out a plan to help develop them.

Offer new challenges

If there is no challenge, there is no progress. The last thing you want is for your employees to become complacent. Typically, high-performing employees are whizzes who enjoy learning new skills and being challenged at work on the daily. You may have an awesome employee who is an expert at one specific skill, which is great! However, they may not feel challenged enough, so assigning new tasks or skills to learn will increase their value as an employee and a professional.

Build leadership skills

Do you want to move higher in your organization or take a new opportunity elsewhere? Who is going to takeover your spot? Identify the natural leaders who could be your successor and start assigning them leadership responsibilities, such as training new employees, leading team meetings, and owning big projects. Start getting them seasoned and developed with management skills, and they will become outstanding prospects for future leadership positions.

Curious to see how you rank as a leader? Check out our WorkCompass Leadership Survey to discover your strengths and weaknesses in leadership.


Denis Coleman

Denis Coleman is the founder and CEO of Work Compass, a cloud staff performance collaboration software platform that helps teams align their efforts with strategic goals and continuously improve performance. Frustrated with the disconnect between strategy setting and day to day execution and the lack of tools available to managers to help them be great at their most important function …. Aligning their teams activities with strategic goals and actively managing for high performance Denis spent over 5 years researching strategy execution and performance management practices before founding Work Compass to create a software solution. Denis has held senior roles in Ireland, Czech Republic and North America with high performing electronics manufacturing and professional services organisations for more than 12 years. Denis has worked as Finance Director responsible for €800 million in annual revenues for Flextronics International, Key Account Manager responsible for annual revenues of more than €600 million for Dovatron International and Management Consultant for BDO one of Europe’s most successful professional services providers.

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