Sticky Situation

So, I seem to be in a bit of a pickle. There is a long back story which I won’t get into now but at work we are in the midst of ‘selecting’ a new mid-level manager for our team. There is someone on our team who has applied for the job as well as 2 outside candidates that were advanced to group interviews with the team. I have known the inside candidate for almost 5 years, I consider him a friend but not a close friend. I feel that given his age he acts too much like a little boy than a grown man.

I had spoken with him amount the position a few times before and as much as I would like to be 100% supportive I have my doubts. I expressed some of these to him but not all my concerns. I had 2 reasons for this. 1. I thought I would have found a new job by the time all this BS rolled around and could have cowardly skipped out. 2. I didn’t want to hurt his feelings and not sure he would have really listened and heard me.

Today, we conducted the group interviews. The other 2 candidates were just better in my opinion. I don’t know them from Adam but they carried themselves well, were well spoken and projected a level of experience and leadership that internal-boy lacked.

Tomorrow we have our team debrief, less the candidates involved…I suspect several of the team will go with him because it’s easier, keeps the status quo or he’s their buddy. I plan to bring up 3 pivotal points which I believe he is deficient in:
1. Leadership Experience
2. Demonstrated Initiative
3. Customer-Focused Attitude

Now 1 and 3 I think can be learned and developed but 2…he has had opportunities to demonstrate initiative but hasn’t on numerous occasions. This is problematic and I think systematic of the deficiencies he shows as a leader and the way he goes about handling our customers (most of whom are internal). Also, I am a bit tainted by the comments he made to me in confidence that he thinks he deserves the job and is entitled to it. The manager we have now is Wonderful!

Dilemma: Should I call him and tell him my take or just leave it until the meeting tomorrow and tell him after. I suspect that someone will leak it and there is more than a realistic chance he will get it based on other’s comments and majority and so on. I have conveyed some of this to him but today helped solidify the issues for me. How would you go about handling this prickly situation?

1 thing I should add is that this person is a mental and physical drain on me…I am not necessarily concerned about the repercussions this may have on the friendship. I am concerned that if I have to stay longer than planned will I have a good manager.

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