Are You Setting Your Employees up for Failure?

setting-failure“Employee loyalty begins with employer loyalty. Your employees should know that if they do the job they were hired to do with a reasonable amount of competence and efficiency, you will support them.” —Harvey Mackay

Mistakes happen. As a leader, it is your response to mistakes that has the greatest impact. Your response will either set your employees up to succeed or set them up for failure. Whether intentional or unintentional, are you setting your employees up to fail?


As leaders, we get busy and it is easy to think that good enough is good enough when it comes to employee training. This is a quick way to set an employee up for failure. First off, employees should have ongoing access to training. Second, determination of what type and how much training is needed should be a two-way conversation between you and the employee. And, this is not a one-time conversation. Checking in with your employees to see how they feel they are doing and in what areas they think they would benefit from additional training is a great way to help your employees succeed.


No one thrives in a micromanagement environment. If you do not want to set your employees up for failure, stand back and give them some autonomy. If you have provided them with the best training and they know they have your support, they should be ready to tackle tasks and challenges on their own. They are not children and they do not need you to babysit them every step of the way.


When you give employees autonomy they start to feel trusted by you to do their jobs and make decisions on their own. Trust is a two-way street. As you demonstrate that you trust your employees enough to give them autonomy and that you are willing to invest in their success by giving them the training they need, they will start to trust you as a leader. If you want them to succeed, show them that you have their backs. When you trust and support each other, everyone wins.


If you want your employees to succeed, you must give them the opportunity to learn and grow. No one thrives when they are stagnant. Your employees want to know that not only are there ample opportunities for them in your organization, but that you will support and encourage them to pursue these opportunities.

Set Them Up for Success

Glen Mazzara, the American television writer and producer, explained, “It’s better to grow your employees, steer them into a place that they can learn and succeed, and want to work hard and be loyal, than to have a revolving door of employees. That’s demoralizing.” No one wins when employees fail. Give them all the training they need and want. Give them autonomy over their own work. Show them that not only are you worthy of their trust, but that you trust them in return. Make sure they have ample opportunity to learn and grow within your organization. Start setting your employees up for success instead of failure.

© 2017 Elizabeth Stincelli

Liz Stincelli is passionate about recognizing and inspiring the leader in each of us. She is the Founder of Stincelli Advisors where she focuses on helping organizations change attitudes, change communication dynamics, improve collaboration and problem-solving, engage employees, and strengthen organizational culture. Liz holds a Doctor of Management degree with an emphasis on organizational leadership.

Learn more about Liz by visiting her website, and connect with her on Twitter @infinitestin, Google+, and LinkedIn. You can contact her by email at


Author: lizstincelli

I am Liz Stincelli and I am passionate about recognizing, inspiring, and igniting the leader in each of us. I am the Founder of Stincelli Advisors where I specialize in helping management teams learn new ways of looking at problems and finding new approaches to discovering solutions. I hold a Doctor of Management degree with an emphasis on organizational leadership. I offer 20+ years of pro-active operations management, problem-solving, team-building, human resources, accounting, and business administration experience in a variety of industries. I serve on the Editorial Review Board for the Independent Journal of Management and Production and the Journal of Managerial Psychology. I have also been a guest lecturer at the Bill and Vieve Gore School of Business Westminster College. You can learn more about me by reading my blog here at: or Connect with me on Twitter @infinitestin, on Google+, and on LinkedIn. You can contact me by email at

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