Ask Amanda is a new advice column for you to anonymously submit questions about the soft skills and hard topics you need to master as a go-to-market leader.
I was a director of a program, but have now left the role. I trained my replacement for at least six months. She shadowed me as I interacted with the teams, and I cc’d her on all my communications, making sure she was trained on all our policies and procedures.
It’s been nine months since I left that role, and she still emails me to “run things by me” or to “make sure she has everything right.” I am getting tired of holding her hand simply because she isn’t feeling confident enough to handle this role on her own. What can I do?
Signed, Pavilion Member
You have offered the support you needed to offer and then some. A question to ask yourself is, are you accountable for this issue or contributing to it? And if so, how can you solve the problem?
Continuing to engage with her when she runs things by you is creating unintentional dependency where she is relying and counting on you, and subsequently, you may undermine her success by not allowing her to take 100% of the ownership of the role.
So now what? I asked fellow Pavillion Member Daniel Reed, who is a Certified Career Coach Development Practitioner and Senior Career Advisor at Top Prospect Careers, for his advice:
"It is important to communicate that you have left the role and that your current responsibilities are your priority. I’d be assertive in expressing that you no longer wish to provide insight into the role and its responsibilities. Still, you’re fully confident in their capacity to handle the role without your guidance. As a leader, you need to foster autonomy and ownership; in this case, it starts with ending the dependency."
So what does that look like? The next time this person comes to you, I might directly and explicitly say something like, “No need to run anything by me. You are trained and experienced. You can handle this on your own. Trust your gut. You got this!”
If they come back to you again after laying that out, simply say, “You have been fully transitioned, and have owned the role for over 9 months now. I am not in a place to help you any further.” Most reasonable people respect other people’s boundaries.
Amanda regrets she cannot reply to questions individually. By submitting your questions to Ask Amanda, you agree to have them published anonymously on Pavilion’s Blog.
Amanda developed her business acumen by repeatedly scaling metrics and creating value for a number of VC-backed startups (YouEarnedIt, BlackLocus, Infochimps), and established technology companies like: Rackspace, Dell, SolarWinds (Forbes #1 Best Small Company in America), NetQoS (bought by CA), PeopleAdmin (a Vista Equity Portfolio Co), and Pervasive Software. She is a longtime startup mentor at Capital Factory and Tech Stars Austin. Amanda is an accomplished speaker, board member, and advisor who believes in integrity, the value of community, and the power of connection. She has lived and volunteered in Austin for nearly 30 years.