Derailing Career - Train Wreck

Are you in danger of derailing your career? Did you know that 30 to 50% of high potential managers and executives experience Career Derailment? Research tells us that those who want to lead, like to take charge and are generally dissatisfied being a follower. They are often more independent, assertive and like to solve problems quickly and appear to have a ‘can-do’ approach to most tasks. Typically, this ‘can do’ approach, matched by their managerial and leadership capability has seen them progress up the corporate ladder along with having the capacity to engage others and bring people along with them. So what is wrong with that I can hear you say?

Unfortunately, the challenging side of these behaviours can also be characterised by impatience and not listening. They can be too independent with some subscribing to the philosophy of ‘seek forgiveness’ rather than ask permission. Ironically, this can produce inspired results yet when it goes wrong it can be a spectacular failure. These folk often solve problems alone and can lack, or don’t feel the need for collaboration.  One consequence is that relationships may suffer and their career may be in danger of derailing.

Research, using Benchmarks®, a Leadership Psychological 360 Assessment has shown that there are five behaviours that can impact Career Derailment:

  • Problems with interpersonal relationships resulting from the poor treatment of others.
  • Difficulty building and leading a team due to an inability to mould and develop staff.
  • Difficulty changing or adapting not being able to deal with complexity or make the strategic transition. Relying on a single strength.
  • Failure to meet business objectives including a lack of follow-through or leaving people dangling.
  • Too narrow a functional orientation which results in differences with upper management

Career Derailment occurs over time. So very often that golden-haired can do no wrong,  leader can find themselves out on a limb and not making progress. Frustration sets in for both the leader and the organisation. At this point, they either leave or get moved on.

Losing key staff is costly to organisations. Therefore, understanding the dynamics of Career Derailment and how to prevent it from happening by active intervention and development of managers and executives is extremely beneficial.

Heading of Career Derailment in your leaders is the greatest development opportunity your organisation can provide them. For more information please contact us