Chapter 1

The Relationship You Need to Get Right

by Sylvia Ann Hewlett, Melinda Marshall, and Laura Sherbin

Katharine, a senior HR executive at a global financial services firm, takes pride in developing rising stars. After a vice president on one of her teams consistently impressed her, she recommended him for a more challenging role in another part of the company. Months later Katharine heard through the grapevine that he was struggling in the job. She asked to meet with him. “You know we’re in this together, right?” she said. “I put my reputation on the line, but I have no idea how you’re performing and whether you need help or air cover.” He promised to keep her in the loop, but communication dropped off again. Katharine realized that his ...

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