The Point: Perhaps you’ve been pushed to the brink… Maybe you eye a greener pasture in the next meadow… Regardless, it’s often a difficult career decision for a leader to determine if they should stay with their current organization or defect to a new one. There are countless criteria that you can weigh to justify staying or going, so in this post we compile five (5) criteria to consider in your leadership career management moment… Enjoy!
The Clash Had It Right
The English punk band “The Clash” of the 1980’s might have been on to something for a leader considering transitioning from one organization to another. Here are the vocals lead singer Mick Jones belted out (as well as accompanying backup vocals in Ecuadorian Spanish):
Should I stay or should I go now? (Yo! ¿Me frío o lo soplo?)
If I go there will be trouble (Si me voy, va a haber peligro)
And if I stay it will be double (Si me quedo, es doble)
So you gotta let me know (Pero que tienes que decir)
Should I cool it or should I blow? (¿Me frío o lo soplo?)
Should I stay or should I go now? (¿Me frío o lo soplo?)
So the questions posed in the song are at the heart of the leadership transition moment… Should you stay OR should you go? There are a lot of reasons to stay at your current organization, but there also might be some pretty compelling reasons to depart. For example, you already know the “devil” you dance with day-in/day-out in the current company you keep. On the other hand, at a new organization there might be a better leadership team. Here then are five (5) criteria assembled to allow you, the leader, to assess this often tumultuous time.
Criteria 5: Are You “Taken Care Of” as a Leader?
Often times I hear from leaders during executive coaching horror stories of how they are not taken care of. They typically have low/no response when asked “Where’s the love?” Organizations not ripe culturally with respect, proper compensation, trust, innovation, and leadership development growth opportunities take note.
Criteria 4: Lack of Empowerment
There’s been a lot of headlines in the leadership development space regarding employee engagement recently, but not so much on the topic of empowerment. Unfortunately, empowerment lies at the heart of the engagement moment for most leaders and their organizations. Think of the concept of “Intrapreneur” and you get this criteria.
Criteria 3: Politics
Don’t think for a minute that there is an organization out there that is absent of politics! While it’s an idealistic moment, and one that many an executive recruiter will share with you to entice the recruiting effort, the reality is that every organization has politics. But are there less politics taking place, or perhaps those that drive in a more positive direction (That’s possible, right?)
Criteria 2: Trustworthy Leaders
Remember in these consideration moments that your ability to interview stakeholders at the potential organization should provide you with an accurate assessment of them, and no criteria to judge should weigh heavier than the trust the leaders in the organization have. I think Stephen M.R. Covey said it best that with trust, anything is possible… without it, well that’s another story!
Criteria 1: Recognition
When was the last time you received recognition in your current organization and was it appropriate? Real time feedback for example is a great barometer to judge not only if an organization provides accountability measurements to their stakeholders, but provides insight into how.
I hope these five (5) criteria provide you with perspective on perhaps one of the more challenging dilemmas a leader can face in managing their career. In executive coaching sessions I’ve reviewed leadership issues ranging from being taken care of, empowerment, politics, trust, and recognition. These are just a few of the criteria you should weigh in determining if you should stay or go. So what will you do? Will you stay, or will you go? Remember The Clash inasmuch, if you go there will be trouble. But, if you stay there could be double!
PS – You may also enjoy some of the other recent posts I wrote:
- The Leadership Challenge: Succession Planning
- The Leadership Challenge: Why HR Isn’t Developing YOU as a Leader
- The Leadership Challenge: Helping Those That Don’t Want Help
- The Leadership Challenge: Saying “Thank You”
- The Leadership Challenge: Are You Mindful?
- The Leadership Challenge: Are You Better Off Lucky Than Good?
- The Leadership Challenge: Can You Drive the Development of Leaders Who Transform Your Business?
- What’s Inside Your Leadership Time Capsule?
- The Leadership Challenge: 10 Characteristics to Develop Your Executive Presence
- The Leadership Challenge: Happy New Year! Now What?
- Leadership Amnesia: Should You Forget the Past to Move Forward to a Better Future?
- The Leadership Challenge: Are Your SMART Goals DUMB?
- The Leadership Challenge: Are You Climbing the Leadership Mountain?
- The Leadership Challenge: They Want You To Fail! 8 Leadership Tips to Overcome Failure
- The Leadership Challenge: Do You Exercise Your Moral Muscle?
- The Leadership Challenge: Conducting Post-Mortem Reviews