Small Companies Must Turnover Good People

Balaji Krishnamurthy

This article was written prior to the merger with Think Shift under its previous name, LogiStyle.

We start this month with some news that we announce with mixed emotions. Stefanie Call, our very first employee, will be leaving LogiStyle to devote herself full-time to complete her business degree and then pursue her own graphic design business. As sorry as we are to see her leave, we are truly delighted for her. Many of you have come to know Stefanie from either one of our workshops or from speaking to her on the phone. Her interactions with you have inspired her to complete her business degree and pursue her ambitions.

It is also befitting to announce the addition of our newest employee, Keeley Hammond. Keeley comes to us with a recent degree in Fine Arts from the Rochester Institute of Technology and some experience in the film industry. We welcome Keeley to LogiStyle.

That brings us to the subject of this month’s Food for Thought.

At LogiStyle we have typically hired recent college graduates promising them an opportunity to interact with CEOs of companies from a broad range of industries and offering them an exposure to concepts of corporate leadership.

They are unlikely to get such opportunities in other employment options. We have been lucky to have attracted some talented employees and each of them has risen to the challenge. Many of you have had an opportunity to interact with one or more of Stefanie, Emily, Gwen and now, Keeley. But there is an inherent limitation to their jobs. What is their advancement opportunity within LogiStyle? There isn’t any! It is not reasonable to expect that one of them would supplement or replace me and deliver workshops on leadership. So, we make this clear to them right from the time we hire them. We tell them that this a great opportunity for a recent college graduate for about three years. After that they should plan on moving on to the next step in their career. Does that pose a burden on LogiStyle? You bet it does! But, what is the alternative? Hire somebody that is content to do this job for 20 years? Guess what you would get!

LogiStyle is a tiny company. Small companies that might be larger than LogiStyle have this problem too. In any company with a pyramid like hierarchy there are few opportunities at the top. Opportunities for talented and aspiring employees in a small company are few and limited – and, at LogiStyle, nonexistent! You are better off recognizing and acknowledging this and working with the employee to develop an appropriate career plan, inside or outside your company.

There is a positive correlation between high performers and people with high aspirations.

Good employees are going to want bigger challenges and larger responsibilities. When such opportunities are limited in a small company, you are better off letting them move on. Maybe even helping them find that next opportunity at another company. If you work with them, they will in turn work with you to make the transition smooth for both of you. What is the alternative? Would you want to hire people that are content to doing the same job for a long time? You will fall trap to the Gallery Owner’s Dilemma.

We close with a note of thanks to Stefanie for her commitment and contributions to LogiStyle. We are delighted that she will complete her business degree and wish her success in her future endeavors.

Food for Thought is our way of sharing interesting concepts on corporate leadership and management with others who might find it useful. The thoughts offered are intended to be controversial and thought provoking. They are intended to help our readers intentionally realize their potential, what we call Potentionality.


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