A reader writes:
I am a sales manager and have a team of 9 Territory Managers. I have one young man on my team without a whole lot of life or professional experience. His father did some consulting for our corporate office and is well known in our company and throughout our industry.
My TM has a habit of bragging about the account he is "about" to get and getting bigwigs involved in little projects. I know they do not have time for this and wish I could get him to understand that this is not a wise thing to do. If anything, he should be waiting until he NAILS the account to communicate with these people - but I feel strongly that he should let his actions speak for themselves. I am really good at bragging about my team and their accomplishments and would do that for him.
Any advice on getting this guy to chill out a bit? I have tried gentle coaching, but he does not get the long-term big picture!
You manage this guy? When gentle coaching doesn't work, you escalate it to something more direct.
You need to tell him directly that there's a chain of command and he needs to follow it. That means not going over your head to involve higher-ups; that's something you will do when the time is appropriate. Then you enforce it.
You're his manager. Don't hint. Tell him the behavior you expect and hold him accountable to it.