by Homa Mojtabai
People don't like you
People know what to expect when they're working with him
People don't take you seriously
He really motivates the team
For example, that time when you asked for a raise. It was awkward and you made the men on the senior leadership team uncomfortable
When he asked for a raise, he outlined it extensively, and the senior leadership team has really taken to him
Like when you sent that email with a typo. You need to proofread your work
His email had a typo, but it wasn't that important
We’d really like to see you take on more of a leadership role before we pay you for being a leader
We really think he can grow into this role in leadership
Leaders need to take the 50,000-foot fighter pilot view. No, I never served in the armed forces, what’s your point?
Leaders need to notice issues that no one else would even consider. That skill will serve us long term.
Oh, wait, you’re 35? Well, you look young. Maybe if you were more mature, like if you were married or had kids (why don’t you have kids, by the way? We’re all a little curious) then we could envision you as being a leader in this organization
He's still not tied down, but with time I'm sure he'll settle down
Well, we’re concerned about your ability to balance everything and you look really tired all the time and I feel guilty asking you to stay late so I just ask good old Tom who’s a great guy and simple and easy to talk to
Managing both work and family is difficult, but really gives him the perspective to lead the team
For example, right now you’re upset that you didn’t get a promotion and you’re asking for concrete examples of what you can do better. I really don’t want to get into the nitty-gritty and you should trust my judgment anyway
When he demanded a raise, he showed confidence in his abilities
When Tom came up and gave you that totally platonic hug in the shareholders meeting you should have just told him to not touch you instead of telling me you thought it was inappropriate. Leaders handle their own problems
Even if he has issues with a situation, he knows when and when not to bring it up
If you’d just wait a few years, there will be some great opportunities here for you, we need you in this role right now
Giving him room to expand his role is the best way to have him guide the team
I mean, toot your own horn a little!
He doesn't need validation that he's doing a good job
I have to say you’re developing a little bit of a reputation as a troublemaker. Five years ago we promoted a woman who happens to be black—I mean, African-American… or maybe just African, I can’t remember—and that proves that we are tolerant and committed to diversity.