Perfection Perspectives

As a leadership trainer, I am always conscious that I often learn from the participants in the groups that I work with. I was working with a group of first-time leaders recently, when a much better understanding of challenges they suffer when managing their time, came to the fore.

The session was all about delegation. It’s a topic I’ve trained in many times and as we were debating why delegation is so difficult, one of the participants raised the issue of ‘perfection’. They were very busy, they told me and that was because they were continually checking that their team members were delivering to their own exacting standards.

“I want what they do to be perfect,” she said.

In the ensuing conversation across the group, we came to debate the value of ‘perfect’ and it was clear that delivering anything less than this, as the accountable manager, was a big concern for many of them.

“But what is ‘perfect’?” I asked them.

“As good as me.” Came the reply. Continue reading

Workplace Stress – Some Common Issues Solved

With 25% of all prescription drugs provided to patients used for psychotherapy; more than 11% of all occupational disease claims related to stress (and rising); and 42% of all absence citing stress as the major cause, workplace tensions have never been worse.

Pressure on business success, especially to meet the demands of stockholders, seems to translate itself all the way down the hierarchical chain to the many at the sharp end. Managers are shifting their pressures as quickly as they can, understandably. as their pressures are no less.

Characterized by symptoms such as:- irritability with others; fear; lack of hope and pessimism in general; lack of interest; lack of self-esteem, boredom; feelings of failure; frustration; anger, to name but a few, more employees are taking the time out today, for longer, than ever before, with paid absence as their support structure.

This stress, of course, goes all the way home at the end of the day, putting a greater strain on all the relationships at home, more than ever before.

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Henry Ford – Whether You Believe You Can – or You Can’t – You Are Right

We spend our lives being who we have become over the years.

Far from being the true character that lies beneath each and everyone of us, we are overlaid with the experiences we have had.

From the very earliest days where we have our parents, wishing us well each and every day, in their own way, they share with us and embody in us all the ways they have become.

It’s not their fault, it’s just the way they are, doing their best and infusing us with who they are. Good and bad. In fact there’s evidence to show that what they share with you, is what their parents shared with them and for generations before. And you’re the next in the cycle, maybe.

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Questions. Questions. Questions

Relationship building is the most important activity for all management and supervisory roles.

Without having your people with you, in full rapport with you, it is likely to be an uphill struggle for you to lead a team effectively. And to be at that level of relationship with them, you have to work towards their trust steadily, consistently.

There are a number of tactics that you can adopt in order to make the most of working with your people and one of the best if by getting to know them really well. By spending time with them and understanding them better.

One of the best ways to get to know your people is to make sure that you get into regular and light conversations with them. It’s all about having the ability to talk and listen to almost anything they might have to say, with an emphasis on what turns them on, and less on you.

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Let Your People Find The Solutions

It’s almost second nature to managers. Their team members come and share a problem with them and seek solutions. The manager, on cue, solves the problem and everyone’s happy.

For managers, here’s where the problems start. Although it’s ever so nice to feel the pride of being ‘the one who knows everything’ in the eyes of their people, it can be both repetitive and time-consuming for the manager after a while. Continue reading