Our annual reviews are approaching & one of my direct reports has been with us for almost six years w/ little growth. My reco was to let him go & find a stronger, hungrier & more motivated designer at the same level. However, my boss instead wants us to promote him in hopes that will spark some motivation. I am not behind this decision & have voiced my multitude of concerns in promoting an employee who doesn't deserve it. HR is behind the decision! Thoughts on promoting an undeserving report?

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Do you think your bosses perspective is maybe your direct report has been doing the same thing for 6 years and the change of a new position will boost their morale. Also when did you notice the like of motivation. If it’s been for 6 years. Why are you not questioning your leadership or the growth of this employee.


Yikes. Sounds like the decision is already made.

1. Make sure specific metrics and performance goals are outlined and communicated to the underserving report as they step into their new role...so that way if/when they underperform your boss will see that promotion does not equal motivation.

2. Start/continue sourcing for stronger candidates - keep your pipeline active on your own, because you know this direct report may not last in the new role.


Yeah… for what you say here maybe his personality is not that ambitious? Why let him go, though? Any possibility to keep things as they are and bring your get talent to challenge instead?

Have you discussed his goals with him at prior reviews? It’s possible he’s not motivated but also possible he feels there is no opportunity for him or he’s received little to no recognition and doesn’t want to put in extra effort if there’s nothing to gain.

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