Why it is bad to compliment the new employee on a job well done

Why it is bad to compliment the new employee on a job well done

Recently, a new employee of IBEX Payroll did a great job on some work. I saw the work, I was impressed, and I began writing a congratulatory email directly to the employee. Sounds like the right thing to do, doesn’t it?

It wasn’t.

This person does not report to me. Despite my best intentions, sending this note would have undermined the authority of this person’s boss. What I did instead was send an email to the boss, congratulating them on leading some really good work and making what appears to be a great hire.

Our job as leaders is to build the capacity of our teams, delegate work, and support the authority of those below us. We can praise the team’s results, but we can’t give direct performance feedback to people who don’t report directly to us. That role is reserved for a person’s immediate supervisor. By building up those below us, we help develop their leadership skills and we free up our own time to move our goals forward and get the important stuff done.

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