I can’t manage (but I think I can)

Parents and people-managers have a lot in common.
Maybe you’re working with a team or perhaps you’re in a family, either way it’s very likely that you’ve faced some hard decisions about offering corrective guidance.  You’ve endured times when you’ve just hoped that people would get a clue and work things out on their own.  You’ve faced the dilemma of having to step in to say something all the while you’ve been wishing that the problem would simply disappear.

Welcome to this week’s Wednesdays With Wayne where we’ll look at the “hard” stuff.  This one is a tough one because it comes from recent personal experience in needing to own some stuff that wasn’t always fun to admit.  And still, to get better, we each have to own where we can get better.  This is the stuff you have to do in order to get to the stuff you might actually like to do.  

Keep in mind that management is a hands-on practice.  It is the act – and action – of managing.   On the other hand, leadership happens from in front, along-side, on the sidelines sometimes, and even from behind.  Yes, leadership happens in all of those places, seldom done in a hands-on way.

Where we fall down –

Maybe you felt like you didn’t want to correct someone because they might be upset.  If you’re honest with yourself, that’s not really managing, is it?  More than likely you didn’t want to have to deal with the upset.  And… it’s time.  They need you.  And YOU need you.  To be a great leader… it’s time!

It’s time to look at building accountability.

That – dear leaders – is different than building in blame.  Someone who is accountable recognizes the direction they need to be heading, seeks guidance and support, and takes responsibility for their actions to move forward.  Shame and blame have no role at this table.  You, as a LEADER, need to focus on your bigger picture while stepping in to provide specific direction and tasks, following up, as a MANAGER.  

We humans like to know what markers to hit.  What makes for a great milestone?  We need to know where the finish line is to be celebrated!

Stating your EXPECTATIONS + CLEAR ACTION STEPS (when warranted) make for great leaders and allows you to step in as a reasonable leader, as needed.  

The directives of “hit the 92% mark” or “clean up your room” are different than “this action is needed (or needs to be eliminated) by xyz time.”
What action are you seeing that needs to be corrected?

How can you be supportive?  How can you be directive?  (And how, in doing both of those, will you be certain that you’re not being blameful?)

You’re not out to be friends with those you’re managing or leading.  Being friendly is different than being friends with.

Respect comes from those whom you are leading and managing as they trust your integrity.  

Remember that great leaders demonstrate credibility and flexibility.  The foundation of your credibility is based in saying what you mean (yes… SAYING what you mean) and then doing what you say.  Remember that, communication and role-modeling are key.  

I’ve had leaders tell me that they’ve simply modeled how they’ve wanted their team members to behave and they’re surprised to find that the team members aren’t picking up on it.  Communicate it AND model it.  Otherwise the perception is that “that’s just how he/she is.”

So here’s a mirror – it’s for you to take a look at your style.  And if it’s not for you, but for someone you know, then… well, it IS for you since you haven’t had the conversation you need to have with that someone you know in order to make them better.

Where do you need to take accountability for not having had that conversation you need to have or taking that one action you need to take?

Set a deadline.  Make that date.  Do that thing.

Talk to me – what are you working on?  How can I help?

Keep making your magic!

All the best!

~ Dr P ~

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Dr Wayne Pernell has multiple programs to help you break through to your next level of achieving more, being more, and serving more.  To learn about the books or programs offered, look around the website and/or click on any of the links in this email.

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