As leading headhunters in Northern California, Pacific ExecSearch knows that demoting a manager is difficult. Communicating that demotion to the rest of your staff can seem downright impossible. After all, the entire situation is awkward; in addition, you don’t want to bruise the individual’s ego any further. Yet, the rest of the team needs to know about the change. The good news is you can position the negative as a positive. Here’s how:

Let the employee make the announcement.

Not only will this help them retain their dignity, it will also give them some sense of control over the situation – which is important if you want to retain them.

Spin the announcement.

Frame the announcement in a way that lets the employee know they are still important to the company. When you’re announcing the demotion, focus on the skills and talents the manager brings to the table and how those abilities will be better leveraged in the new position. For instance, let your other employees know that the Mike is now focusing on X, Y, Z tasks (like increasing sales or crunching budget numbers) and you’re hiring someone new to fill their shoes.

Don’t show pity.

Regardless of how you phrase the announcement, your staff will likely be buzzing with the news of the demotion. You can help the demoted employee retain their dignity by not showing any pity. Doing so could make them feel worse in an already awkward situation.

Follow up.

Once the demotion is complete, continue to offer guidance by assigning a mentor to the demoted manager. Helping them thrive in their new role will benefit them and the company.

Also, make sure you regularly check in with the new manager to find out how it’s going with the demoted employee. You may find that things are going well, or you may find that the employee has become bitter and is negatively impacting morale as a result. If that’s the case, then you’ll need to deal with the situation before it escalates.

Create a contingency plan.

Some demoted employees are grateful to still have a job; others, though, start looking for a new opportunity immediately. That means, if you assign a key project to the employee, you should have a back-up plan in place just in case they resign mid-project.

Does your company need help recruiting managers? As leading headhunters in Northern California, our team of recruiters has extensive experience in sourcing, evaluating and helping companies hire mission critical professionals for top positions. To learn more about how we can help your organization, please contact us today.