I’ve just arrived home after an exhausting day. I had one meeting after the other. And they were all important.
One such meeting was with one of my departmental heads and our human resources adviser. The discussion point was whether to renew the contract of an employee who was reported to have been underperforming. I had been informed previously about the underperformance of the employee, and, based on previous reports from the departmental head, I knew that she was going to recommend not renewing the employee’s contract. Given my already packed day, I was almost tempted to cancel the meeting, and to tell her to go ahead and implement her decision. That would certainly have saved us all some time.
But something stopped me. Several months ago, I made a resolution that, as far as my leadership role was concerned, I would no longer take shortcuts. The meeting was to discuss the career of an employee, and, even if I already had a packed schedule, it was up to me to make the time to hear the arguments for not renewing her contract. Perhaps the departmental head was being too harsh, or perhaps not. Perhaps there were some key points that had not been taken into consideration. Perhaps there were some questions I could ask, just to be sure that the right decision was being made.
So I changed my mind, and we had the meeting.
It was a very good meeting. We raised and discussed all the key issues, examining the matter from all sides. We realized that things were not quite as clear-cut as had been supposed. We decided to take a day or so to reflect on the matter.
I am now back home, and totally exhausted. But I am glad we had that meeting. I could have cancelled it, and asked the departmental head to implement her decision. However, that would have meant that we wouldn’t have discussed the matter with as much care as we did. Also, the employee would have left the company, and I would be forever wondering if we had taken the right decision.