When a leader loses authority

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A family is sitting down around the rarely used dining room table for a holiday meal.  Everyone is in their semi-finest attire.  The table is set beautifully including a huge turkey with all the “fixings”.  Dad has the remote to the television beside him in the big chair at the head of the table so no one can turn on and watch TV during diner. This is family time.

Dad also has a proud look on his face as he carves the turkey with his custom wooden handled carving knife.  After each slice he takes a sip from his favorite mug his kids gave him from his last birthday.  His wife sits at his right eating from the only china plate she owns passed down from her mother.  The two kids have their places marked at the table by monogrammed napkins with their name on them.  The dad has made it clear that there will be no junk food or electronics at the table.

The oldest child asks to use the dad’s carving knife and he reluctantly lets him.  Diner begins and the family starts to eat. About that time the father has an important call. Ignoring his own rule he takes the call and steps into another room.

After the lengthy call the father steps back into the room to what can only be described as mild pandemonium. He sees:

  • the turkey is untouched
  • a half-eaten bag of Cheetos are on the middle of the table
  • the kids have orange fingertips
  • the baby is gnawing on the monogrammed napkins
  • mom’s china plate isn’t in sight
  • the carving knife is in the floor
  • the television is playing cartoons
  • the oldest child is playing on the laptop
  • the other child is sitting in dad’s big chair drinking out of his mug
  • and mom has her face in her hands obviously tired and frustrated of no one listening to her instructions

This scenario plays out every day but in the workplace.  The leadership starts to be a little lax in his duties and stops looking at the little things and the next thing you  know, authority has slipped from his fingers and been distributed either to one or multiple people.

As a leader if you find this has happened, you have to reset the table. With family, employees, children, even your spouse you have to set boundaries and roles. Going slow and trying to coax the leadership back into your grasp may not be enough and may take too long. Man up and reset the table back to the proper way, the way you originally intended.

A bull in a china shop

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Most people in the current workplace, home, church, and social setting are uncomfortable with confrontation. In fact the reason so many people come from what is known as a dysfunctional family is because people would rather live with a problem than confront it. They are scarred to death that they may hurt someone’s feelings and that would by default make them a mean and nasty person for bringing it up in the first place.

On the other side of the coin is the bull in the china shop. These are the people you actually somehow enjoy confrontation. In fact, if none exist they create it.  The revel in the opportunity to have the conversations most dread like body odor, bad behavior, or personal discipline. They are clear and authoritative. Everyone knows what to expect, but there is a major downside. Everything eventually crashes in on the bull if they are too brash. People will resent this type of person. They will comply with orders but will never really buy in to your leadership. If the bull breaks down on the interstate, good luck getting anyone to bail them out (unless they threaten their job).  Bulls never become great leaders because people will do just enough to pacify them.

A good leader knows that problems can’t be ignored but can’t be a bull in a china shop. Good leaders know how to walk the thin line between weenie and the trigger happy gunslinger. You must always speak the truth, but in love. Jesus was never afraid of offending anyone but never acted in a cruel manner.

So Proud and Excited

I’m so proud to announce the upcoming release of my website’s official eBook ” How Leaders Manage -Direct and Practical Instructions”.  

I’m a big reader. However, it’s not by choice. It’s more by force. I know to get better and to keep growing personally and for the other people around me I have to learn on a daily basis so I can share ideas. I read around thirty books a year. For some that may seem like chicken feed and for others, it’s more reading than you’ve done in your life.

If you’re one of the ones who thinks it’s a lot,  I hear you. I understand where you are coming from. What I’ve found is that when reading, most of the books are just fluff. It seems like the author is just trying to fill pages rather than provide a book full of useful content. Out of the books I’ve read I usually extract 2-3 useful nuggets. Everything else is useless.

That’s why I’ve written this book. I want to provide a book to the marketplace full of useful nuggets. I want to provide insight to that school teacher with disrespectful students, to the college student wanting to be ahead of the game, to the working mother who wants a more manageable family, to the middle manager who desperately wants to be promoted, and to the church leader who keeps having one crisis after another.

If you want to sharpen your leadership skills and transform others into money making machines, get this book. But I warn you, it’s like taking a drink from a fire hose.

I’m still working on the cover. Let me know what you think.

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When you stick your head in the sand you expose your butt!

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Some leaders find certain situations too intimidating to take on. They just want to hide and hope the storm blows over. The truly are waiting for things to just work themselves out by themselves. They pretend that if they ignore the problem, it will go away.

Ignoring dangers and threats is a recipe for disaster and this method never ends well. Can you just imagine a gazelle that sticks his head in the sand with a pack of lions creeping around the perimeter? That gazelle is bound to have his rear end chewed.

Here are some examples for leaders of having their head in the sand:

  • Keeping an employee with a bad attitude who is poisoning the rest of the team
  • Having the wrong person in a leadership position
  • Losing money in a certain area while continuing to pump resources into it knowing the return on investment is super low

Review People’s Work

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I had a friend a few years ago who told me how they were required to send their manager a detailed report which included their activities, results, expenses, and new plan of action. It was a very tedious and extensive report to say the least and it was required every Tuesday morning.

By Wednesday afternoon the manager would ask my friend questions that were clearly answered in the report that was sent in the previous day. It was clear their manager didn’t review the reports. They only checked to make sure it was turned in.

People feel devalued if an assignment isn’t inspected, especially if they’ve put extra effort to do a really good job. I personally have this happen when I tell people their company vehicle is going to be inspected on a particular day. When that day arrives and they are prepared to have their vehicle inspected, it’s almost like I told them their dog passed away if I delay the inspection until the next day. And that’s totally understandable. They worked hard to make sure it’s shined and detailed to perfection. When I put off reviewing their work I’m telling them that the work they put in isn’t important to me and that’s not right.

Honor people by reviewing their work and reward them for a job well done.

Be sure to get my eBooks:

Lessons From Paw Paw Coverhttps://www.smashwords.com/books/view/411467

cover 4   https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/433783

  https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/470598

enviroment cover https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/483259

The Mission Creep!

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You know, being the leader of any organization can be tough.  The toughest part probably isn’t dealing with the daily fires of bad attitudes, deadlines, payroll, or grievances. The most difficult part in my opinion is having a lot of success over a long period of time.

I know that sounds counterintuitive but let me try to explain.  The way I look at it is that the job of a leader is to recruit, train, equip, enable, and keep everyone focused on the mission.  The last part of that list is the one that gets many leaders as well as myself.

When people are successful it’s easy to take their success for granted. You think that they’ve got a handle on it and can run on auto-pilot without any further guidance.  But a wise man once told me that nothing fails like success.

When you are success for a long period it’s easy to be distracted. A mission creep is just that. You take your focus off the goal and become distracted with something else.  A mission distraction usually is something as simple as lifestyle, a predefined job description, silly internal squabbling, status or money.  In other words, sales goals can creep into job duty comfort, customer first mission can creep into profit margin per transaction stats, the mission of paying off all debt can creep to a new “doodad” you see your friends enjoying and the mission of company growth creeping into perpetuating old customs that don’t work anymore.  When something besides the mission becomes important, it gets confusing for everyone.

You aren’t ever shoved away from your mission, it’s more like a nudge.  Initially it’s not that big of a deal but over time that slight change of direction may take you millions of miles away from your initial target.  Imagine flying to the moon you have aligned yourself for a straight shot. Upon take off your direction is changed a fraction of a degree. If you don’t make corrections you may end up on mars instead of the moon.

I suggest you do a vise check to determine if you are creeping away from your original mission. Ask yourself:

“What do I talk about?”

“What do I track?”

“What’s on my mind the majority of the day?”

Scripture says “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” – Luke 12:34 In other words, what you focus on is what you care about.

If you remember this if you remember anything from what I’ve written,  KEEP THE MAIN THING THE MAIN THING TO AVOID VEERING OFF COURSE.

 

Be sure to download the eBooks

Be sure to get my eBooks:

Lessons From Paw Paw Coverhttps://www.smashwords.com/books/view/411467

cover 4   https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/433783

  https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/470598

 

enviroment cover https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/483259

The Attributes of a Leader

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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

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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.