Don't Ignore Your B Players

A company's B players -- competent, steady performers far from the limelight -- supply the stability, knowledge, and long-term view the firm needs to survive during tough times. Yet many executives, beguiled by star performers, ignore B players. Neglected, these dependable contributors leave, taking the firm's backbone with them.

To keep your B players, recognize their value, nurture them, and motivate them. For example, ask what they want from their careers, then match them with mentors who will help them get it. Track your communications to ensure that you're not ignoring (and thus alienating) them. And make them feel appreciated, even if it's just through a handwritten note.

Today's Management Tip of the Daywas adapted from the HBR article, "Let's Hear It for B Players," by Thomas J. DeLong and Vineeta Vijayaraghavan.

By washingtonpost.com Editors  |  August 4, 2008; 8:00 AM ET  | Category:  Management Tip of the Day
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