Place the Right People in the Right Roles

FranklinCovey Content Team


How many people on your team are in the right role? Do you need to make adjustments?
Building a winning team can be one of your greatest legacies as a leader, but it’s rarely recognized or rewarded in real time. In fact, you’ll likely only get credit for it after the team disbands or you’ve moved on.
To accelerate the process of getting the right person into the right role, carefully consider these questions:
  • What skills and passions does this person have, and what type of team can make the most of them?
  • What kind of leader will help this person flourish and tap into their strengths?
  • What types of personalities will this person struggle to work with, and can you address it early, make it safe to talk about, and help ensure success?
  • What systems and processes will help this person thrive in their new role? Are they used to bootstrapping and fixing things themselves, or used to large infrastructures and deep resources to call upon?
  • What culture will this person experience in their new role? Are they nimble enough to assimilate into a strong culture, or are they influential enough to lead and breed a new and better culture?
  • Is this person moving from an individual contributor to a leadership role? Are they able to identify, and perhaps let go of, some of the traits that made them successful and learn new skills to inspire and lead others? Are you in a position to help coach this person and help them be successful?
  • What are the seemingly small, self-defeating traits you’ve noticed in this individual? Can considerate and courageous coaching minimize them or even turn them into assets?
  • Which changes could you make in your own style to better ensure their success and impact in their new role?
Successful leaders often discover they’re much like the eHarmony of business—they embrace the art of matchmaking and introducing the right people to the right roles. Many will have to fail their way to eventual success—the key is how fast can you get there with as few divorces as possible.


  • Identify someone’s true passions and strengths so you can align those to your business needs.
  • Use the list of questions in this challenge to assess whether someone could play a different role.
  • Seek others’ ideas about your observations and opinions.
  • Have courageous conversations to address situations around personality, emotional maturity, self- awareness, etc. (By the way, too many leaders skip this bullet and move on to the next.)
  • Exercise the courage to remedy any misalignments.

For more on placing the right people in the right roles, watch this short clip from Scott Miller, author of Management Mess to Leadership Success.

Leading a team requires a different skillset than working as an individual contributor. To succeed in the face of new challenges, first-level leaders need to shift how they think and act. Download our latest guide and develop your people into a high-performing team. 


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