Your technical employees have been hired and begin their career with their expertise and preferred skills working on meaningful technical projects for your company. As they have grown and expanded in their roles, a few of the technical professionals have begun to stand out in the organization, and a few necessary management positions naturally become necessary and available.
Continue using their technical expertise or expand their skill set and start to climb the corporate ladder. It is tempting to consider a supervisory promotion — more money, a corner office, status. This decision, though, is not right for everyone.
Organizations can head off some of the potential turnover or unhappy employees by holding career conversations well ahead of time. Most technical professionals are motivated by doing interesting and challenging work themselves — not supervising others who get to do their work!
This factor is the key reason many technical employees become dissatisfied with a management role.
An in-depth career conversation and training (as needed), about the realities of supervision demonstrates good business sense, shows respect and consideration to the potential new technical managers, less confusion to the existing technical teams, and will pay big dividends— both financially and with the good will and morale of the company.
It saves disruption and a lot of time and energy to give everyone a realistic look into their next career move. Once these technical professionals understand what is expected, they will have the tools to make the right career decision.