Have You Ever Replaced Yourself?

For an hour today, I coached one of my clients on how to onboard a new hire. This isn’t just any new hire, it’s the one who will take over a good portion of my client’s job.

Have you ever replaced yourself?

My client, let’s call him George, needed some assistance with deciding what to tackle first. Here’s my advice to George.

  1. Take an inventory. What’s working? What’s not working? If it’s not working, figure out why it’s not working so you don’t pass “it” along, be it a process or system.
  2. Find a quiet time and place to brainstorm all the tasks that eventually go to the new hire.
  3. Prioritize all those tasks into a sequence as to when they’re given. What’s immediate, what’s mid-training and what’s longterm.
  4. Plan how to introduce the new hire to your team. You’ve gone outside to find the candidate so be aware some already on the team may feel like they were passed over. Put your communication plan in place and have group and individual conversations, as required. Don’t skip this step or you will regret it later.
  5. Plan, based on the new hire’s credentials,  how much training, coaching and mentoring the new hire will probably need.
  6. Put your plan in place to train, coach or mentor. Determining which technique to use in any situation will be a challenge. Give the new hire the benefit of the doubt and allow the person to demonstrate personal skills before you step in.
  7. Ask good questions to determine the skill set of the new hire as tasks are tackled. Good questions will help you determine whether it’s training, coaching or mentoring.
  8. Be prepared to change your plan once the new hire in on board.
  9. Plan your own schedule as to how you’re going to use the free time you’ll have once the new hire is here. What projects have been waiting to be tackled? Do a brainstorming exercise to plan your future. If you’re busy with your own projects you’ll be less likely to micro-manage your new hire.

George and I had a good conversation and now it’s up to him to execute the plan.

My question, what steps have we missed? I look forward to your feedback.


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