A Manager Can Make It or Break It

A Manager Can Make It or Break It

Some years ago, I was trying to hire a high potential leader from a marquee brand for my organisation, which was in another industry. I needed someone like him to bring in the perspective that we desperately needed. I had a great breakfast meeting with him. He was equally excited about the value he could add. I quickly set up his conversation with the CEO that evening. (I’ve always valued speed when moving on an exciting candidate, which is something I don’t see as much with many companies.) They hit it off well.

My CEO and I then discussed the specific landing role for such a person. We agreed to align on the need for a role and get someone like the talent we had met. The manager agreed to the idea and was quick to meet up with the candidate.


It all looked great until I got a message from the candidate just after he had finished the last meeting. I called him back. I was disappointed to hear from him that he may not want the hiring possibility to progress. Perplexed, I asked him what had happened after two super conversations he had admitted to having. He said he did not find the manager to be inspiring enough to want to work with him!

This is the talent reality. It’s not just about the company or the role. The manager can be a big reason behind an ‘aye’ or a ‘nay’. Many managers still think they are giving someone a job.


How do we become a magnet for great talent and not one that repels?


Honest introspection can reveal a lot.

Prabir Jha is the Founder and CEO of Prabir Jha People Advisory. He has been the CHRO of two Fortune 500s and two NYSE-listed Indian majors.


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