I hired a very talented employee a month ago part-time and this has triggered a stir ever since. The employee is talented, creative, innovative, courteous, generous and very intelligent. He was very humble and honest during the job interview, unlike many people who "do anything to get a high-paying job".
The company, ultimately, is a software firm. We have been going through a lot of issues lately, such as horrible code and a severe lack of ideas. Even the most respected and "high-paid" employees couldn't solve some of the problems that we had, and they themselves branded it a very difficult time.
But then, the very talented employee (let's call him Leon) came and arguably, this was a magical moment for the firm. Leon came, solved virtually all of our problems, came up with many interesting ideas, and wrote crystal-clear and beautiful code that has set a standard at the firm.
Not only that, but he also came up with some very clever tactics to promote our firm and sales have increased rather greatly. The firm is still small and recently established, but we've been gaining a lot of success lately, thanks to the work of Leon. But here's the problem is: He is 18.
The average age of the employees at the firm is more than 30+ and ever since Leon arrived, he has been refuting the ideas of the previous employees and asking me to follow his ideas. And I am not saying that this was bad, but rather following him skyrocketed our revenues.
Everybody at the office is feeling highly intimidated and even humiliated by Leon. Everything that they do, every idea that they come up with, every code that they write, Leon picks up an immense variety of issues in it and suggests something about a thousand times better. They are all feeling embarrassed how a young introvert can be so much better than them.
After all, how would you feel if you built a machine that produced a piece of paper and thought that it can't get any better than that with great effort, then somebody so young came and made a machine that produces even better paper, with innovative features that you couldn't even think about? That is the situation here. Leon is very nice and treats everybody with kindness, while everybody at the office has adopted an adverse attitude towards him and is really angry. Leon is always formulating unique software and many of the employees just "follow what the world follows" but Leon doesn't do that. In a sense, he's in a league of his own and a few days ago, I even saw him teaching how to cleverly make a chess engine in Malbolge to a veteran employee and I could see the look on his face, he was clearly feeling awkward.
Last friday, 7 of my employees came and asked me that "Leon should be fired" because his presence is making everybody feel uncomfortable, and that this has led to a "decrease in productivity". I couldn't come up with a better reply, so I just said that "I'll think about it." Then yesterday, another group of employees came regarding Leon and advised that "his presence at the firm is causing great turbulence and insecurity among us and thus, it is has having a negative effect on the firm as a whole." and I told them again that I cannot be bothered with such matters at the current moment and that I'll see about it.
I do not want to fire Leon, because he is fantastic in every way possible but then If I don't fire him, there is a potential threat of many employees to depart the company. How can I handle this situation to keep Leon but also make the others more comfortable?