The attributes of a leader will run down to the rest of the organization. This includes the morals, character, ethics, decision making, combativeness, and harmony. If the leader is good the likelihood of the rest of the organization being good is high and vise versa.
Harmony is as precious as the anointing oil that was poured over Aaron’s head, that ran down his beard and onto the border of his robe. – Psalm 133:2
The oil from the anointed’s head runs down to the beard and onto the clothes.
Don’t get sucked into someone else’s crisis. People will mention to you what they are going through just hoping you will get involved. That way if it works out and you solve it, boom crisis averted, and you have just became the “problem fixer”. Every crappy dilemma they have they will bring it to the fixer, like you have the time or energy.
If you try to handle it and it turns sour, guess who they will blame. That’s right, it will be the so-called “fixer”‘s fault. The “fixer” is now the “scape goat” for shucking all responsibility. And don’t think they won’t recall that they really didn’t ask you anyway.
You would be better to acknowledge the problem and not get involved. “Aw that stinks” works wonders. If you feel bullied into a corner by their problems being laid at your front door step, ask them leading questions that set them up to handle it themselves like,
“What are you going to do?”
“What options does that leave you?”
“What part can you control?”
Remember not to steal. It’s their crisis, not yours. Taking it would be stealing. You don’t have to save every damsel in distress. Leave some for superman.
Thinking of the worst thing that could happen and accepting that scenario as truth frees you up to be successful and work without fear failure. No longer to you have to be paralyzed by fear of rejection, losing good employees, bankruptcy, separation or even the fear of death. I am amazed at how much power and freedom it gives people when they emotionally digest and accept the absolute worst case scenario.
Many times we as leaders make this much more complicated and difficult than it needs to be. We play out how the situation might go in our heads to the point of ludicracy. Then trapping ourselves in fear of what might happen, we do nothing. Fear of paralysis kicks in.
If people do something wrong, they deserve to know. They deserve a leader with enough intestinal fortitude to tell them. Sometimes they are simply testing you to see what you will let the get away with and if it keeps going it can transform to disrespectful.
A reprimand is pretty simple. Just make a sandwich, a reprimand sandwich:
Praise the person’s qualities Make sure you are sincere and not like a guest on Jerry Springer who always starts out with “You know I love you right” then drops a bomb on them.
Hit the problem BEHAVIOR directly and hard by telling them it is simply unacceptable.
Then remind them of their value to you and the team.
The proper way to delegate is to imagine you have a rope attached to each of your people. The more they prove they are competent and can handle a given situation they more you gradually let out slack in the rope. When they display bad judgment, you shorten the rope. The goal of being a good manager is to have a lot a rope let out in many directions but never just hand them the entire rope. The mistake many make is when the grip is too lose or too tight.
Micromanagers don’t know how to loosen their grip on the rope. At best micromanagers are bad bosses. They don’t have enough self-confidence to release tasks or projects when competency and integrity have been proven repeatedly.
Micromanagers either have very low emotional maturity or are control freaks. They are the meddlesome mother-in-law still instructing the couple after the couple has been married for ten years.
Micromanagers have an extremely hard time attracting and keeping high quality people because they won’t put up that kind of trash. If you are a micromanager and are saying to yourself that your micromanaging is a result of your team’s inability, it might be a good time to start up upgrading your team.
Everyone has had or will have personal problems. I’ve had team members experience the loss of a very close family member, mental health issues, personal injury, severe child illness, parents who needed round the clock care, court issues, and housing problems. These reasons should never result in someone being released. We don’t shoot our wounded. We learn to staff around it.
When you have mercy and give kindness to your team who is legitimately hurting and in need, you build a massive amount of loyalty not only with them but the rest of your team. Companies who treat people like a commodity as if they are just cogs in the great machine create an “us versus them” culture and you don’t want that.
Everyone needs an easy friend. An easy friend is what you would expect (if your mind is in the gutter go ahead step out of that filth). Easy friends are the one who doesn’t try to make feel guilty, manipulate you, take advantage of you, or be in some kind of childish competition with you. Friendship can be hard enough in life without having one or both parties making it hard on the other person.
Easy friends are the one who can go months without hearing from you and when they do everything picks right back up on the positive note it left off on without missing a beat. They are the ones you look forward to speaking with. When your phone lights up with an incoming call and it’s their name that pops up, you rarely send them to voice mail.
Easy friends don’t hang on to every word and store it in their mental locker to analyze it later to find out “what you really meant”. They don’t look for an underlying message or some kind of ulterior motive.
Easy friends let you speak your mind and give your opinion without any backlash. You don’t have to worry about walking on eggshells around them because they aren’t easily offended. The have the ability to laugh at themselves and exercise it often. Their level of ego is almost nonexistent but they still seem to have an unwavering confidence.
Easy friends are easy to forgive. If you really screwed up and you attempt to apologize, they won’t even let you finish.
Some of the luckiest people on earth are the ones who have married an easy friend and now they are an easy spouse.
When an employee walks into your office with a problem or a decision that needs to be made, just imagine them with a monkey standing on their shoulders. When they tell you the problem simply imagine that the monkey jumping from their shoulder onto the center of your desk. So if your people stop by your office all day and leave you their monkeys, you will soon be running a zoo. The mistake would be to become a zoo keeper.
Experienced leaders know that to be successful they must ensure the people take their monkeys with them.
To get them to the level you must take a few steps to help them develop into the mature people you know they have the potential to be.
Give them some ideas for options and instruct them to come back with three good ways to solve the problem and a suggested course of action.
The next thing is to bring three possible solutions and you walk them through the reward and consequences of each and decide which is best. After a few times the best people start to see the pattern of what you expect.
The best people go ahead and give you a debriefing that tells you what the problem or opportunity was and how they solved it. This is called running the business not the other way around.