Nines and Sixes

Everyone knows in a company who the nines are. They are the ones with good judgment, who anticipate problems, follow through, and create goodwill, etc. Ask any manager who the nines are that work for him, or her, and each can tell you in a second who they are.

However, not every employee can be a nine. Eights and sevens can be very productive as well, particularly if supervised by a nine. It’s the sixes that are a problem. They look good and talk a good game, but will, if allowed, take a company right off a cliff. However, they will have moved on to the next job before it actually happens. The question then is how do you identify the sixes? It’s really quite simple. All you have to do is ask any manager about a particular employee, “Is this person a nine or a six?” The manager might respond by saying the person is not a nine, but rather an eight or a seven, which is ok. ¬†However, if the person is a six, the manager will always say the person is a six. No personnel evaluation system will ever do this for you.

Everytime you move a six out of your company, you have done a great thing because sixes attract sixes and drive nines away, a deadly occurrence. The more nines you have, the greater chance for success because most business and technical decisions are really not that difficult for someone with good judgment.

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