39Don’t Parent a Difficult Employee

It’s easy to find yourself falling into the parent trap at work. You may feel a great affinity for a young, ambitious employee because he attended your alma mater. And the person’s charisma and big ideas may wow you. So when he refuses to do an assignment he considers beneath him you may just let him have his way. You may tell his supervisor to find something more worthy of your protégé’s talent. If you do, you’re parenting, not leading.

Jason was chomping at the bit to move into management. He had become chummy with a high-ranking executive who was impressed with his Ivy League background and superb organizational skills. Jason’s boss, ...

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