Are Your Employees Under Attack?…From Whom?

In order to be successful organizations need to have goals and destinations. The paradox is that when we manage so tightly to the interim steps – when we get attached to the interim goals we often lose sight of the bigger picture and our team can come under attack …FROM US!

If you think about a sea voyage or plane trip, the vessel is off course most of the time. (Missing the interim goals) The Navigator makes adjustments and pulls us back on course. If they are capable and paying attention, they know when they are off course and what they need to do to get back on course.

Don’t you think your team knows where they stand against the goals, where they are off and where they want to go to reach the goals?

What happens when the ship’s Captain stands over the navigators shoulder and commands, “go this way and now that way, can’t you see you are off course”? How effective do you think that is? Is the captain sharing anything the Navigator did not know? Do you think it is any more effective when we stand over our people and micro- manage them?

I once worked for a company of 30,000 employees in 10 countries. As Vice President of Business Development,personally responsible for millions of dollars in sales. Yet I had to get every airline trip approved by the CEO or President of the company.

Is that the best use of the CEO’s time? Do you think he was really examining the trip and the components to make a real decision? What happened is that they have made this a rule, so that everyone down the line has to be prepared to “defend” their position or decision.

  • How well do you focus on moving towards your goals when you are defending them?
  • How do you think your team does when they are on the defense?
  • Is your team under attack? Who are they defending against?

Take Good Care

One Comment:

  1. Very well said. Rules are nearly always created with the best of intentions, set in place to guide us along the way. The problem is when the rules take precedence over the true goal or true need of the organization. When I took over under-performing organizations, one of the first things I would tell my team is that our first rule was “No STUPID rules”. In other words, no rules that were put in place with the best of intention that now hindered us from achieving the real goals of the company. It was amazing how many times I discovered that we had become our own worst enemy.

    Or, as you put it, we were under attack from ourselves.

    Thanks for a thought provoking post!


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