Prune Your Leadership Team to Encourage Future Growth - Profici

			Prune Your Leadership Team to Encourage Future Growth

Prune Your Leadership Team to Encourage Future Growth

When a business grows quickly – as is the case when it moves from being a startup to an established brand, or when you suddenly expand into a new market – things can feel disorganised. You might feel that one area of your business is thriving, whilst others are going off in the wrong direction. You might discover that some parts of your team are working and collaborating effectively, whilst others are struggling to keep up with how the business is changing. As a business owner, you need to ensure that your business is healthy and on the route to success, and this could mean having to prune your leadership team.


By pruning your leadership team, as is the case when you prune a tree or shrub, you can encourage future growth and ensure that your business’ energy is being used effectively. But, how do you prune a leadership team and why is it necessary?



What Does it Mean to Prune a Leadership Team?

A lot of people make the mistake of assuming that pruning a leadership team means letting people go, but this isn’t always the case. There are ways to prune a leadership team without terminating someone’s employment. The aim of pruning is to strategically make changes to improve your team’s effectiveness, leading to future business growth. It’s not about making random cuts, it should be a thought out process aimed at building a leadership team that aligns with the business’ changing needs.


Examples of Leadership Pruning

Here are some examples of leadership pruning, all of which can give your team a much needed shake up.


  • Saying Goodbye to Underperformers – If you have a leader who is consistently underperforming, pruning might involve letting them go. This could be because they are not meeting your expectations, they aren’t meeting targets or their skills no longer align with where the business is heading.


  • Restructuring Your Team – You might have a leader with valuable skills, but their current role doesn’t align with what you need as a business. By pruning your team, you can restructure things, ensuring that everyone is in a position that utilises their abilities.


  • Reducing the Number of Leaders – It’s important to have enough leaders to effectively lead a team, but too many can be detrimental. A large leadership team can be slow and inefficient, but pruning can help to streamline things. Communication and decision making is a lot easier if you reduce the number of leaders – after all, too many cooks spoil the broth – as long as you ensure that all important roles are still filled.

Why You Need to Prune Your Leadership Team

If you are a keen gardener, you will know that pruning leads to growth, and that’s also the case with your leadership team. You need to prune your team to make sure that the business continues to evolve and change. A leadership team with a clear vision can steer the business more effectively, and pruning helps to create a culture of shared goals. It eliminates conflicting priorities and approaches, and makes sure that everyone is on the same page.


Pruning also helps you to refresh your leadership team’s skills. As your business grows, the skills needed from leaders are likely to change. Pruning helps you to bring fresh perspectives and expertise into the mix, ensuring that the team’s skills align with the direction that your business is going in. You don’t want your business to be held back simply because you’re missing a key skill.


Regardless of the industry or sector that you work in, innovation is a major part of business success and growth. Without pruning, your leadership team could struggle to come up with new ideas, innovation and solutions. Pruning your leadership team encourages everyone to embrace change, to share new ideas and to let their creative juices flow.



Pruning Helps Your Business to Grow and Thrive

What your business needed when it first started is likely to be very different to what it needs now. As a growing, healthy company, a small team isn’t going to cut it and your business needs more. With growth comes a need for experts, and professionals who have specific skills and experience. You might find that within your existing leadership team but, a lot of the time, a breath of fresh air is needed. You don’t want to hold your business back, simply because you’ve had certain leaders since the beginning. If your business needs a change of leadership, pruning will help.


It’s important to make sure that your business isn’t being limited by the people in leadership positions. If you keep trying to grow and evolve, but you’re being blocked each time, you need to make some changes. Often, this means reevaluating your leadership team to make sure that your business goals are being met. If your goals are not being met, consider rejuvenating your team by swapping some things around. You could inject some new life into your leadership team with no hires, or change things up by delegating tasks differently. You might want to shuffle people around, ensuring that everyone is working in a way that makes use of their experience, skills and knowledge.



How to Approach Pruning Strategically

Pruning your leadership team can mean huge things for your business, but it’s important to be strategic about the changes being made. Instead of jumping head first into pruning, and hoping for the best, think carefully about how the changes will impact your business going forward. You should aim to be strategic, rather than ruthless.


  • Have a Clear Vision – Before you start pruning your team, clearly define your business’ goals and the leadership skills needed to achieve them. This will help you to determine who needs to be pruned, and who can stay where they are.


  • Evaluate Your Leaders – Dedicate enough time to thoroughly analyse each of your leaders’ performances, and avoid rushing into things. Consider their performance, skillset and alignment with your vision. It’s a lot easier to make the right decision if you have given enough time to the process.


  • Use Data Wherever Possible – If possible, use data to help you to make leadership decisions. Using performance metrics and evaluations can help to support your decisions, giving you the confidence to make a decision, knowing that facts and figures back you up.


  • Communicate Honestly – It’s important to have open and honest conversations with your team, clearly sharing your expectations and thoughts on various roles going forward. Instead of immediately opting to terminate someone’s leadership, explore options like mentorship or redeployment within the business, in the hope of finding a role that they’re better suited to. They could end up thriving elsewhere, benefiting the business in another way.


  • Think About Succession Planning – When you are pruning your team, you can use the opportunity to identify leaders with the potential to move through the ranks. It’s important to have a leadership succession, to ensure that you’re never left without someone at the helm, and this is a great time to find the next person.


  • Create a Transition Plan – If a leader is transitioning out of the team, you will need to create a plan that clearly explains how this will work. You might need to offer redundancy packages, depending on the circumstances, and find someone to replace them. Maintaining open communication throughout the process will help to minimise disruption.



At Profici, we know how hard it can be to let a leader go, or to ask them to deploy elsewhere. But, you need to think about what’s best for your business, and that’s something that we can help you with. When it comes to scaling a business and encouraging growth, our experts have what it takes to guide you through the process. Get in touch to find out more.