We’ve talked about many of the dangerous traps that rock stars at work face: becoming high maintenance, not following the rules and ceasing to build the relationships at work they need.  However, the traps don’t end there.  There are three more dangerous traps that snag high performers at work and drag them down and out.  Each is deadly and can lead to the end of one’s tenure virtually overnight.

Take stock in the following and make sure you haven’t accidentally slipped into any of these:

  • Taking all of the spotlight – While it is fine to take some well deserved credit for your hard work, I’ve seen some stars at work get addicted to the shine.   They don’t like to share the spotlight and get threatened when they see others in the light.  This can lead to them intentionally undermining others and/or taking more credit than they deserve.   Are you alone in the light?   Share the shine. 
  • Touring with the wrong band – I’ve seen some rising stars at work that have been sunk simply because they hitched their star to the wrong people.  Leadership changes and suddenly the rock stars greatest ally is now their greatest liability.  Are you inadvertently anchoring yourself to someone else’s career?  Cast a wider net.
  • Stop delivering – Then there are the rock stars that simply stop delivering.  They become so intoxicated by their fame that they begin to believe that “they” are the reason for their rock star status, not their performance.  Organizations have short memories.  What have you done lately?  Keep your performance consistently high.  It’s not you they love, it’s your performance.

That wraps up our rock star traps.  They are all subtle, sticky and extremely dangerous to one’s reputation and career.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, if not watched closely you could find yourself going from rising star in your organization where you are “selling out venues every night” to looking for opportunities elsewhere – “playing in local dive bars.”  None of us want that.  Be vigilant and more importantly – be honest with yourself!

Next week we conclude this month’s dysfunction with the “prescription” you need to get and keep yourself on top – maintaining your rock star status and not letting fame go to your head.  Stay tuned!