How do you judge colleagues? Would it be based on
1. Their recent performance/behaviors or
2. Their strengths based on which they got hired/stayed/promoted?
3. Your relationship with them?
It’s safe to say it’s a combination of all three. In fact, recent behaviors may have a significant impact on the relationship? I think so.
I once launched a new initiative (what else do you do when you get bored and want to distract your teams?
I realised that couple of them were not interested in it nor pulling their weight around it. Both would not have done the project work or would skip the update calls calling themselves busy. One of them was a top performer, and the other was struggling with his team’s productivity.
I am sure they must have had their reasons for not interested in the initiative and maybe also lacked the courage to flag off that they cannot participate. Either way, their lack of interest and application was conspicuous. These were people I had hired, were talented and experts in their space. But, as their supervisor, I felt they were not pulling their weight on what was a crucial project (so I think even today).
My subsequent interactions with them suffered, and I guess whenever our paths met, I judged them based on those recent behaviors I had of them.
Of course, then somebody put some sense into me, and I changed on course on those two colleagues.
However, I found myself in many such zones in my work life, where I judged people based on how they behaved or performed in recent times. I forgot what I liked in them while hiring, their strengths that I admired, and the potential for which we promoted them.
All that I remembered was what happened recently!
I wish I had a kind of Ghajini memory, which only reminded me of why I like my team. Life would be much happier without judging them on the recency effect?