Are you in the Management Weeds?
Are you a manager or leader who is so far into the weeds of the business to know what is going on at a strategic level? Has it been a while since you looked at the business or department strategy? Do you find you have no time to talk or think about the future and your team? If these sound familiar, do not panic. This is common across businesses of any scale and complexity but this is especially true in mid-size businesses where the managers are also the doers. You are good at what you do and the clients are loyal to the business because of you. However, being on the ‘front line’ of the business is not always the best place for you to be, if you want your business and your people to survive and thrive.
Maybe it is time to step BACK into leadership?
You might be asking ‘why should I step back into a leadership role’? or 'No Management 'expert' talks about going backwards - surely I should be going forwards'? Well they are not always right.
Put simply, in order to get some perspective, look ahead, maximise your talent, sort out complexity etc, you cannot do it, if you continue to be drawn into the demands of the day to day. You might also be thinking ‘but I am a really good marketer/designer/accountant (insert whatever) and I want to stay doing that’. If this is you, then ask yourself whether leading a business is for you because staying in the weeds is not leadership. Is there a way to pass the reins to someone else so they run the business operations?
Here is some advice to help you with those weeds:
1. Ask yourself ‘why am I doing this job’?
2. And, ‘What am I working towards’?
3. Who else can do my job and which elements? - write a list of all the components of your job and then write who, in your organisation, can also do this. Be honest with yourself.
4. If a task is not adding to the long-term future of my team or the organisation ask yourself “do I really need to be doing this?”
5. Get away from your desk and spend time with your employees – find out what they really think about the organisation, who they are doing and what they would change if they could.
6. Do Number 5 but with your customers or clients.
Start to do the above on a regular basis and you will start to plant seeds.