Saturday, May 7, 2011

I'm Out of Control

So this weekend I'm going through a unique experience.  I'm not the one in control. I'm not the one making the decisions, or allocating resources, or directing the action.  And I don't like it.  I'm supposed to be the calm one who others look to during stormy times and keeps the team together.  I'm the one who takes the point and clears the way.

Who Has the Power
But not this weekend.  I have to simply take what is handed out.  And that's just what most of our employees have to do every day at work.  Think about that...every single day.  

Having to wait for bits of information...keeping a close eye on everything in the hopes of gaining a better understanding of the"rules," and simply wondering in general are all taking a toll.  And I'm only on Day 2 of this process.

I have been fortunate to serve others in a leadership role for many years now.  I've grown accustomed to having a certain level of authority.  But I'm just like everyone else here this weekend.  For the record, feeling helpless does not sit well with me.  I wonder how it feels to those who work for us?  I wonder if I provide enough timely information to my team?  Do I show my confidence in them so they can break away from a sense of helplessness and unleash their talents?  What culture have I created?

How About You
What are you doing to make sure your employees do not feel helpless?  Is hoarding information a strength for you?  Do you trust your team?  Do you have confidence in them?  I'm guessing that if you don't feel good about them, they probably don't feel good about you either.  Are you in "control?"

I'd love to hear from you.

No Excuses.

pic courtesy of Life Skills Authorities


  1. Hi Jay, I couldn't agree with you more on the struggle to properly inform and empower a team. This is so critical for the team to have so they trust their leadership and work hard without question to deliver. I try to treat each member of my team with honesty and respect I would want to receive. I believe in setting as clear of expectations as possilbe and asking patience when I don't have the answer or the information to find a resolution. I would love hear how you empower your team.

  2. Thanks Marlo. I'm a big believer in not micromanaging. If I show my team that I trust them, they are free to take risks and (sometimes fail), but that's okay. Most of the time they do amazing work. For me, work is all about the relationships, not just a task list.

  3. Great Thought! I find that involving my team in the decision making process and empowering them to take lead roles helps reassure their valued place at the table. Nothing is more important than trust. We tend to get side tracked when egos and insecurity override our grander goals.

    Thank You! - Dave