The Prematurely Promoted Problem

Two Articles on the Importance of Supporting Next Gen Managers


5 minute read

Stressed young worker in office

In our weekly Dion Leadership team meetings, we regularly make time for personal check-ins. As active proponents of well-being and healthy company cultures, I believe it’s important for my colleagues and me to get to know each other on a personal level and to support each other through life’s successes and challenges.

After the personal round robin, we move onto a tactical check-in on projects and customers. And when time allows, I will facilitate a big-picture discussion, asking questions like:

  • What are you hearing from our clients?
  • What are you experiencing, reading, or watching, and how can we all learn from it?
  • What’s going on in your family and friends’ workplaces?
  • What industry trends are you noticing?

Several weeks ago, that big-picture discussion led to an important realization. Our colleague Lauren mentioned that several of her millennial friends were being asked to take on bigger work roles. They were struggling with the decision to move into these management positions or other higher-responsibility roles when they did not feel fully ready for this step. They were also concerned with the personal toll it could take.

These new workplace scenarios intrigued our team, and the discussion prompted us to do some more research on it.

As leadership and organizational development thought leaders, we always try to stay on top of workplace trends so that we can understand the future of work and produce solutions for emerging issues.

While much has been written about the Great Resignation and its impact on retaining top talent, I believe there is an important next chapter to our COVID-fatigued workplace story that is yet to be acknowledged and understood: the challenges that come with a new generation of prematurely promoted managers.

After researching this important issue and composing my thoughts on our findings, I was thrilled that both Fast Company and the Association for Training and Development (ATD) agreed and published my articles on the topic. The Fast Company article outlines the situation and my thoughts on what it means for senior leaders, and the ATD blog provides specific recommendations for addressing this emerging issue.

I hope this prompts you pause, consider your workforce, and be intentionally supportive of your prematurely promoted managers.


Fast Company Article

“The Next Great Resignation Challenge: Managing the Prematurely Promoted”
Act now to ensure these new managers don’t crash and burn.

Read Now


ATD Blog

“The Prematurely Promoted Problem”
Nurturing your next generation of managers is critical.

Read Now

As always, I appreciate hearing your ideas, insights, and comments. If you are prematurely promoting employees in your organization, I’d love to hear how you are supporting them. Please reach out if you’d like some advice on the best way to provide leadership development and coaching to these young, talented next generation leaders.

Steve Dion-Founder & CEO-Dion Leadership

Steve Dion

Founder & CEO

Steve has dedicated his career to understanding and improving organizational cultures through the creation and deployment of innovative assessment, leadership, and team development programs. He is a regular contributor to CEOWORLD magazine, Chief Executive, Fast Company, Training Industry, and HRCI’s HR Leads Business Blog. Steve and his Dion Leadership colleagues have recently launched a new
e-learning course that supports
 work-life alignment.

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