Is it really worth it to bend over backwards to accommodate an employee who has a ton of knowledge and experience but brings little else to the organization? Over the years I have seen companies label individuals as “untouchable” because of their organizational history. This is despite clear evidence that the person can be destructive to the people around them.
It seems that almost every organization has at least one individual who everyone puts up with for longer than they should because the person has some special knowledge and experience.
In effect they hold the organization hostage. And it can be a significant risk to the organization if the person were to leave suddenly… or would it?
An HR Manager was sharing her organization’s experience in having a former plant manager demoted several times and put on special projects because of his considerable knowledge of the plant facilities and equipment. He was deemed untouchable despite the fact that there were many long serving employees in production and maintenance who likely could handle most situations that arose.
What to do if your organization is a knowledge hostage
What to do if you are the person holding the organization hostage