The two kinds of high performers and how to keep them happy

Rockstars vs Superstars

Rockstars

There is a common misconception about rockstars. Some believe they lack ambition and drive. But sometimes people just work out what level they want to play at, and once they find a position they like, they want to keep doing it. This isn’t a sign of weakness but a sign of intellectual maturity.

A rockstar will drive excellence and stability in your team. You want as many rockstars as you can find.

Superstars

When Rocks become Super

Everyone has different needs

One of the biggest mistakes managers make when they have a rockstar in their team is to push them into promotions. You want to avoid this as much as possible. But that doesn’t mean they don’t want to grow.

To help rockstars grow, what they want is to deepen their technical expertise. So it’s worth providing opportunities to allow them to do that. They may also respond well to opportunities to share some of their technical expertise with others.

Be mindful of your culture

When you only glorify promotions, rockstars will end up pretending they are superstars for fear of being left behind. They’ll feel ashamed staying in a role for so long. So you want to ensure rockstars are valued (and they know they are valued) to ensure this doesn’t happen.

A basic rule is this. Make sure rockstars and superstars are praised, and paid, accordingly.

Management isn’t growth

With superstars, make sure to encourage ambition, aiming high, and remove as many barriers as you can so they can grow your business.

In case of emergency

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Product Management Executive 🖥 Writer 📚 Tea nerd 🍵 Machine Learning Enthusiast 🤖

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Brad Dunn

Product Management Executive 🖥 Writer 📚 Tea nerd 🍵 Machine Learning Enthusiast 🤖