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Imposter Syndrome

Imposter – Who Do You Think You Are?

Who Do You Think You Are….to own a business?

You’re the Owner and/or Managing Director of your business. It could be any business – but let’s say it’s an IT business.  You have been running the business for a couple of years, maybe more than a couple.

You started this business because you loved what you did working for someone else in the IT support or IT development business.  But maybe you didn’t love the lack of focus on customer support.  Or perhaps you didn’t feel the staff were treated as well as they could be – or paid as much as they should be.  Maybe your boss was a nightmare, and you couldn’t wait to get away from them.

So, you started your own business, full of enthusiasm and knowing exactly what you were going to do differently.

And it all started well.  You got some new customers, and they were happy, so they talked about you to others.  And before you knew it you were too busy and so you hired someone.  And then a few more.

Now here you are a few years in – with maybe 10 – 20 staff.  And you’re getting too busy again.  You need people to step up as a leader in your business. 

But there is just one problem. 

You. 

You have imposter syndrome.  Often you wonder what on earth you are doing, and constantly berate yourself for getting it wrong when it comes to leading your people and your business.  The inner voice is constantly shouting – WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE….to be the boss. 

So many business owners suffer from imposter syndrome, it’s crazy.  No really – it IS crazy.  It’s crazy to beat yourself up for not being perfect at something you have probably never had any training on how to do. 

Would you pick up a gold club for the first time and expect to do a hole-in-one?  Of course not.  Would you pick up a Mary Berry cookbook for the first time and expect to turn out the perfect cake or gourmet 5 course meal?  That would be silly, right?

It’s Not Imposter Syndrome

So why do we think that the minute we start a business or get promoted to a management position, we are suddenly going to be a great leader?  It’s not going to happen.  It’s not imposter syndrome, it is just the crazy pressure we are putting on ourselves to be good at something that actually takes work and practice, and knowledge.

But like any other skill, managing your team for maximum performance is a skill that can be learned. 

Learning to lead is a bit like a jigsaw puzzle. There are 3 pillars, 9 accelerators, and they all have to go together. The thing is, as your business grows you have to change the way you show up and the way you are thinking and behaving. If you don’t, you will not have the impact, confidence, and influence to grow the team to be able to step up in the business.

You will constantly hold yourself back, do more “stuff” than you should be doing and be the busy boss you never wanted to have or to be. So, stop thinking of it as “imposter” and start thinking in terms of growing, learning, and implementing new tools, techniques and approaches.

It is simple, but not always easy.  The biggest hurdle can be identifying what is missing and understanding what to do about it.  So I have decided to make it easy for you.  You can take my 14 minute crash course here. 

It’s a crash course in creating Impact and Influence and is especially for Quiet Leaders and Introvert Business Owners.

In this free video training, I show you:-

The 9 accelerators to creating high-performing teams (and which one 97% of leaders should concentrate on now). I will also show you how to transform your impact from ‘luke-warm’ to ‘on-fire.  And I’ll share with you how to have your own Team Performance Engine, working for your business, whether you are there or not.

Access the free training here.  

Lots of clocks representing being too busy

Are You Too Busy – For Your Own Good?

Are You Too Busy – For Your Own Good?

I had a bit of a rant this week about the irony of a situation that happened.  I organised a webinar aimed at business owners who are doing too much, working too hard and have too much to do.  The reason they generally have too much to do, is that they still have a worked mindset.

What do I mean by that? 

Well, let me give you an example.  It’s nearing the end of the day – you’re planning to knock off in half an hour or so, and a client request comes in. 

Of course, it is mega urgent (when is a client request not mega urgent) and it is a client where you want everything to go smoothly.  Perhaps it is a new client.  Or maybe one where things have gone wrong in the past. 

You know that you have people on your team that you could ask to do this.  BUT.  It would take you longer to explain the situation to them than it would for you to do the blooming thing yourself.  And so you do it. 

This means that your half an hour knocking off work time now becomes an hour and a half later. 

And that is not the first time it happened today, let alone this week. 

You are working TOO hard because you are still in a technician mindset.  You are not operating as the leader of the business or the team, but as its star performer.  The problem with that is – whilst you may get the job done, everyone else is not having to pick up the load. 

In fact, they KNOW that you will do it, and they don’t have to, so why should they?  Or perhaps they know you will refuse their help if offered, so they don’t offer.

Meanwhile, you are there getting more tired and fed up by the day, with no time to do your real job of leading the team and sticking your head above the parapets to oversee the bigger picture. 

This is what I am passionate about – this is what I work with business leaders on every day of my working life.  I work with leaders on staying focused on being the leader and not doing the do.

So, imagine the irony.

I organised a webinar – free I might add – to help leaders who are too busy to get less busy but more productive.  It was called – “From frustrated, overworked and under-valued to productive, profitable freedom”.

51 people registered for the webinar.  They all got a confirmation email and a reminder.  And then at the appointed time……….2 people turned up. 

I get it.  They were all MD’s and CEO’s.  I expected a fallout.  There is always a drop off when I run a webinar – not everyone who signs up can make it on the day.  But 2 PEOPLE????

It’s hilarious.  They were too busy to come to the webinar which would show them how to be less busy.  It’s a bit sad really, that the thing we need most – to invest time and knowledge and skills into our own self-development – is often the last thing on the list.

If you didn’t see the notifications for the webinar and would like the slides or the recording – please message me and I will get a copy to you. 

And if there is one thing you take from this as a leader, let it be this.

If you don’t look after your own development, how can you look after anyone else’s?  And that’s your job as a leader.  Lead by example, therefore, and put your own oxygen mask on first. 

Quiet Leader

Are You Part of the 69% ⁉

Are You Part of the 69% ?

No – it’s not an April Fool, it’s a genuine question.  Let me explain.

Have you ever done a D.i.S.C. profile, or heard of it? It’s a personality profiling tool, which is useful in recruitment or development processes.  Most people consider that ‘natural leaders’ are a high D or I profile, or both. 

Let me briefly overview for you what the 4 ‘types’ are.

D = Dominance

A person primarily in this DiSC quadrant places emphasis on accomplishing results and “seeing the big picture.” They are confident, sometimes blunt, outspoken, and demanding.

i = influence

A person in this DiSC quadrant places emphasis on influencing or persuading others. They tend to be enthusiastic, optimistic, open, trusting, and energetic.

S = Steadiness

A person in this DiSC quadrant places emphasis on cooperation, sincerity, loyalty, and dependability. They tend to have calm, deliberate dispositions and don’t like to be rushed.

C = Conscientiousness

A person in this DiSC quadrant places emphasis on quality and accuracy, expertise and competency. They enjoy their independence, demand the details, and often fear being wrong. 

Now as I said, most people believe that ‘leaders’ are in the high D or i categories – or both.  And, you know what, some definitely are.  And because of the natural styles of these types, they are more outgoing, extroverted and generally make themselves known.  And that’s where the assumption comes from.

Would it surprise you to know, therefore, that a whopping 86% of leaders are NOT high D or i?  69% are high S and 17% high C.

Which means ….wait for it….MOST are actually quiet leaders. 

Wait, what?

If you have ever worked for a manager/business owner that seems to avoid making a decision, can’t delegate or is ‘too nice’, then you are dealing with one of the 86% of leaders.  Perhaps it is you?

Do you find yourself not speaking up for fear of offending someone?  Perhaps you are not that great at sharing the vision and think people must just know what you are aiming for, cos it’s obvious, isn’t it? (Spoiler – no it isn’t!).

Perhaps you don’t know what to say, or find yourself avoiding difficult situations or conversations?  The problem here is that if you want to have a high performing team, then something needs to change – and that something is probably you!

You see, your business cannot grow until you do. 

But it’s not that easy, is it?  Well, it is considerably easier if you have a system to follow.  A system like the Quiet Leaders Launchpad. 

Our next cohort of the Quiet Leaders Launchpad is coming up soon, and if you feel ready to make some changes and grow yourself so you can grow your business then you might want to know more about what is involved in this groundbreaking program for quiet leaders. 

Click here to find out more about what’s involved and potentially book a no-obligation call with me to discuss whether you are a fit for the program and whether the program is a fit for you.

TEAM

How do Quiet Leaders and Introvert Business Owners Create High Performing Teams?

High Performing Teams are created by 9 key actions.

If there was ever a time you need your team to be performing at their best, it is now.  Coming out of the Pandemic (hopefully) many businesses need to be ‘hitting the ground running’ and ‘making up for lost time’ (among other idioms and metaphors).

That’s why I did a half an hour webinar on this subject today.  The subject of getting your team to perform at its best wand why it might not be.

If your team is not performing at it’s best, do you know why?  It will probably break down into one of the following 3 reasons:-

  1. They can’t do it.
  2. They can do it but they don’t do it.
  3. They could do it if they wanted to but they don’t want to so they won’t. 

These 3 issues have different causes and very different tactics needed in order to manage the people involved.

What To Do If They Can’t Do It

The simplest is probably the “Can’t Do It’s”.  These people literally can’t do it – and for 2 possible reasons.  Either they do not have the capability or they don’t have the confidence.  If they don’t have the capability that could be for a variety of reasons. 

Rarely it is a physical or mental limitation, but it could be.  Perhaps they need to go up ladders or carry heavy things, and they have recently been ill or had an accident and they just are not capable of doing that anymore – temporarily or permanently.

If that is the case, then you clearly need to look at their job description and what amendments can be made to it so that they can still achieve meaningful input for themselves and for the business. 

This would also apply to a mental impairment caused by an injury or illness.  But it might not necessarily be a lack of brain function.  It could be that they just aren’t wired to do that sort of work.  In which case – you may need to look at your recruitment practices!  

Is It Capability Or Confidence?

If it is not either of these things, then it is probably a lack of confidence.  They don’t think they are good at something – or they have tried once and got it wrong, and felt bad or were criticised for it.  And so, they don’t want to try again and believe they “can’t” do it. 

Or they are new – to the company or the team, and lack confidence because they are the ‘newbie’ and they are comparing themselves to other more established team members. 

In this case, you need to look at whether they need some help with understanding how to do their job – Capability.  They may need training on some aspects of their role. Or they need to learn how to step up to the responsibility – Autonomy.  In which case you need to coach them.  Or they need some Clarity – some targets and KPI’s, an understanding of the expectations and the step-by-steps, that they need to complete. 

When it gets to looking at the ‘Don’t Do’s and the ‘Won’t Do’s – things can get more challenging and would take longer than I have for this blog to share with you.  What I would like to do is share the webinar link with you – so that you can get an overview of this complex area, and some potential strategies you can use with YOUR team, right now.

Just reply to this email with ‘TEAM please’ in the subject line and I will make sure that a copy of the webinar comes over to you asap!

Turn that Yes into a No

I Just Can’t Say No!

I Just Can’t Say No!

I was listening to the radio today and the presenter played a snapshot of Seth Godin’s comment on ‘saying no’.  It totally stopped me in my tracks!

He said that when you don’t say NO, but you should, then you are acting as a “cost-free unprioritised contribution to other people’s work.” 

OMG!!!  He is so right!

So many people I work with are suffering from one of the following because they can’t ‘Say No’. Do any apply to you too? 

  • Too much to do.
  • Feel guilty.
  • Don’t want to let people down.
  • Think I “should” or “must”.
  • Know it “won’t get done if I don’t do it”

However, Seth is right. We have it wrong if we think we are doing anyone a good turn by always saying yes.  And the person we are doing the most harm to is our self.

It could be you are ‘over parenting’.  You know you do it, right?  At work AND at home. Perhaps you are short of time, and so you do whatever needs to be done because you “don’t have time” to show someone how.  Perhaps you do it because you equate doing everything for them to showing them you care. 

But here’s the thing.  If you are doing everything for them you are not enabling them, you are Dis-Abling them.  You are preventing people (including your actual kids) from growing up in the role and in life. 

You think you are doing a good thing, being kind, not putting too much on anyone.  But actually, you are just treating like kids (yes I know your actual kids ARE actually kids, but they will stay kids forever this way!).  

This behaviour just teaches them to keep asking you.

Some might think they are getting a good deal because they can push stuff onto you instead of taking responsibility for it.  But they need to either do it themselves and grow or find the right person to delegate that too.  But that should not be YOU!  

There will be others, who might not say anything, but who are probably frustrated that they are not trusted and they are not growing.  They might end up leaving.  They will certainly end up unmotivated and therefore less productive.  You also are probably frustrated as your own stuff needs doing and what you want to do as a leader doesn’t get done.

So, saying no is a good thing.

You don’t need to be “ranty” about it.  Saying no in the right way helps people to understand why and what the benefit is to them. Pre-framing will help.  Telling them why before it happens. And getting agreement on their understanding before you do it.

This approach quickly retrains their thinking and will help them enjoy taking responsibility.

And that is what is real leadership is. 

That is something we talk about a lot in the Quiet Leaders Launchpad, as it is a part of the role that those who consider themselves “Quiet Leaders” often struggle with.  And once they have this skill under their belt – boy does it make them feel good! 

But more importantly than that, it makes them a more effective leader, and their teams more productive and happier. 

Lots of good reasons to master the ability to ‘Say No’. Drop me an email if you need any help with this crucial skill! julie@thinkbedoleadership.com

Learn to say no

What is THE Most Important Leadership Skill?

What is THE Most Important Leadership Skill?

I was asked this question the other day by one of my clients on the Leaders Launchpad program (coaching and training for quiet leaders).  And it’s a really good question. 

You see, there are a number of critical skills for a leader to have to be successful in their role.  And all of them are important, but there is one that is arguably the most important.  Certainly, without this skill, you will never be successful as a leader, and will likely end up overwhelmed, burnt out and frustrated. 

It isn’t Vision.  Though of course without a clear vision, it is hard to lead people towards the goal.  But you can still lead them.  And it isn’t empathy.  Without empathy, it is difficult to create lasting relationships of trust with the team.  But it isn’t impossible to lead (short term) without this critical skill. 

Communication skills, decisiveness, problem-solving – they are all critical for a leader. 

You might think integrity is the one key skill you must have as a leader.  And whilst I might agree with you, I think you would accept that there have been successful (at least in the short term) leaders in the past who have led massive amounts of people, with little or no integrity (or at least what you and I would deem integrity to be). 

So What Is This Key Skill?

No, the one key skill without which you cannot succeed as a leader – is the ability to say NO.

Now I’m not talking about being a ‘hard arse’, aggressive or scary leader.  But that’s the problem I see with many quiet leaders.  They think that saying NO will mean they have to BE that scary person.  That people won’t like them if they say no, or they will lose relationships. 

I would argue there are many ‘graceful’ ways of saying NO that can save face for you, and the person you are saying NO to.  But it is critical that you learn that even if you are saying YES all the time, you are also and already, saying NO.

When you say YES to working late, covering your boss’s back by doing extra work, or taking back a project from one of your team, to help them out – you are saying NO to something.  Maybe it is time with your family.  Perhaps it is time for you.  Possibly you are putting back your own project that you planned to have finished.

It’s important to realise you are already saying NO.  But are you saying NO to the right things?

What Can You Say No To?

As a Leader, you must focus your energy on the things that only you can do.  These are the key tasks.  Strategic thinking and decision making, relationship building, coaching, creating the vision, the values and the standards in the team.

When you don’t have the right boundaries, or any boundaries, and say yes to everything everyone asks of you, things will only go one way.  Downhill.  People may like you, but they may not respect you – and if they don’t then you can’t lead them.

So, here’s an idea.

Make a list of everything you said yes to in the last week and everything you said no to.  And that includes things you said NO to by default because you didn’t have time – all the things you said yes to had to be finished first.  Things like watching the latest episode of (fill in the black) with your children or your partner.  Eating dinner together.  Going for a walk. 

Now look at the list and decide – are you saying YES to the right things, and to the right AMOUNT of things?  If you are – that’s great.  As long as it is on purpose and FOR a purpose. 

But the chances are there are things on that list that should be delegated, outsourced, put in the bin, or pushed back to whoever tried to dump them on you.

If you have difficulty saying NO – I totally get it.  It can be scary, or at least uncomfortable. But long term, the effect of not saying NO when you should, will only get worse.  If people know you as someone who generally says yes, you will find more and more landing on your plate. 

The respect from others for your time, and the importance of your role, will diminish.  Your time to do the important stuff in your own job will be less or will be pushed back into your personal time.  You will feel frustrated, overwhelmed and resentful and never have the time to be the amazing leader that you were born to be!

It is the most critical skill you can learn as a leader, and the quicker you develop it, the better, more productive and more enjoyable being a leader will be for you – and for everyone around you!

If you need any help with identifying whether you are saying yes to the right things, or in helping develop Win:Win strategies for saying NO, then I have just opened up spaces on my next Leaders Launchpad cohort.  Please email me on julie@thinkbedoleadership.com or connect with me / message me on LinkedIn.

For now – just try it this week.  Say NO to something you shouldn’t be doing.  And see how amazing it feels. 

How To Have A High Performing Team - it's not magic!

How To Have A High Performing Team 🎯

How To Have A High Performing Team – Step One

I don’t know if you are currently a leader – in your own business or someone else’s, or whether you are hoping to step into that position in 2021. 

Either way, one of the key things that is going to make you stand out from the crowd, and at the same time have a happier and more successful working life as a manager / leader, is to have a high performing team.

Many of my clients have said to me that this is a critical part of their 2021 planning and have asked me to help them to develop their teams from ‘underperforming’, ‘OK’ or even ‘good’ – into a high performing team.

Well, here’s the thing.  The first part of having a high performing team, is for them to know what that looks like.

When is the last time you sat down and wrote down what YOU stand for and what YOUR vision is?

Because if you don’t know, then the sad news is you will never have a high performing team.

OK – so perhaps you DO know.  Perhaps you even have it written down somewhere.  But if I asked your team what that actually was – asked THEM to tell me what your vision, values and goals were, would they know? 

You can be honest, because no-one else is in your head when you are reading this.  So – honestly now – do you know, and does your team know what you stand for and what the bigger picture is?  Or are you expecting them to be telepathic?

Do Your Team Know What Is In Your Head?

I have had all sorts of answers to that question (does your team know…) over the years.  Everything from, “Well isn’t it obvious” (no it isn’t), to “I only employ people with gumption” (great – but still, they are not telepathic, unless you hire for that too?).

So, as a result of all the requests, this week I have been running a KickStart Challenge.  Unleash Your Quiet Leader Brilliance.  The content of this has been designed to help you to understand and get very clear on what you stand for and what YOUR bigger picture is, so that you can then clearly communicate that to your team. 

You see, once a team knows precisely what is important to you, and where you (as the leader) want things to go, it is SOOO much easier for them to get there.    It’s the difference between saying to an Olympic runner that you want him to win, or saying ‘we need to take 0.4 seconds off your time in the next 6 months, and these are the tools we are going to provide you with’ (a training schedule, this equipment, this trainer). 

In this example – the former is a dream, and the latter is a vision and a plan.

Here’s the thing that most leaders forget.

Your team are not you.  Yes, I know – sounds obvious, doesn’t it?  But think about it for a minute.  Your team are not you, and they don’t know what you know.  They don’t have the experience you have (they have different and sometimes even better experiences – but not the exact same). 

So, they do not know everything that you may think they know.  And they certainly will not make the same decisions you would.

And that is fine.  Because sometimes they have a better or different experience and may have ideas you haven’t thought of, or be better at a certain skill than you are.

But Watch Out…..

If your team do not know what YOUR vision and goals are as a leader, they will fill in the gaps, and come to their own conclusions.  They might prioritise the wrong things, or not realise the importance of a particular deadline.  They are basically flying partially sighted.  And that’s really not fair to anyone, is it?

The only way to start to have a high performing team is for everyone to be working from the same map.  Otherwise, would you agree, you might all end up at different destinations?

UnLeash Your Quiet Leader Brilliance – What’s It About?

So – on the challenge – which you will find in the Quiet Leaders With Impact Facebook group, there has been some great work going on all week.  You can go back through the challenge and all the resources by joining the group (if you are not already in it) and looking for Unit X

Please note – the Challenge and all the resources will be coming down next week – so go look at it pronto if you want to see what it has all been about.

The challenge finishes tomorrow and tonight I am doing an extra bonus session for those who want to get that content and who might be interested in working with me further. 

You see, all the content we have been going through this week is just one part, of one module of the Quiet Leaders Launchpad Program.  I developed this program to help quiet leaders (you’ll know if that is you, or one of your managers) to develop their voice, speak up, speak out and be the Leader that they know they can be. 

On the call this evening I am offering a free strategy session, to those who might be interested in getting in on the Quiet Leaders Launchpad which is opening soon to just 12 participants.  Why only 12?  Because this is an intensive coaching program which delivers massive results for the individuals in the group.  I have found 12 to be the optimum number, any more than that and there is a danger that some people don’t get all the attention they deserve and need. 

So, 12 it is, and there are 7 currently booked for a strategy session.

How Can You Be Part Of It?

As you are part of my Inner Circle, I am opening the offer up to you too.  Book a strategy session and we can both see if it is a fit.  If we don’t think the program is for you, you will still get value from the session in the form of clarity around what you want to achieve in 2021. 

Here is the link to book on a call with me.  During our 30-min. call, we’ll uncover your super strengths & biggest barriers and determine whether we’re a good fit to work together.

And if you want to catch up on the Challenge – go join the group here, or if you are already in – click on Units here.  If you don’t have time to do the whole Challenge before the content comes down – go look at Day 1 – that will give you the overview.

Lead like a Lion

Talk Like A Leader – Think Like A Leader

Talk Like a Leader – Think Like a Leader

Which comes first the chicken or the egg?  In terms of the age-old context of evolution, I’m not sure anyone can say for sure. 

But in terms of leadership – the answer is sometimes the chicken and sometimes the egg. 

What do I mean by that?

Well – in the context of thinking like a leader and talking (or behaving) like a leader – there is no one answer.  Of course, if you can think differently (and you need to as a leader), then that will lead you to do things differently – and then you will end up be-ing different as a leader.

Here’s the thing.  You can start this cycle anywhere.  If you start to do different things, then you will become more skilled or behave differently which will affect your thoughts.  It works both ways.  And sometimes the ‘thinking’ bit is the most difficult aspect to change by just…well….thinking about it.

If the problem with your leadership skills or styles is in some part down to how you think, then it isn’t easy to think your way out of that.

Think back to the first time you were given a  bit of responsibility you didn’t think you were ready for.  It could have been your first team leader or management role.  It could have been stepping in for your boss at short notice due to sickness or emergency.  It could just have been the first time your Mum left you in charge of your siblings.

The point is you survived that – even though you didn’t think you were ready. 

Sometimes in order to believe you can do something – you just have to DO it.  Getting on with stuff, talking like a leader, for example, builds in you the confidence that you can do it.  And trying different things can be the quickest way to learn what works and what doesn’t. 

Specifically, when we are considering how to talk as a leader, you won’t know what works until you do it.  However, there are some general considerations.  Language is very important. 

Some key points about talking like a leader.

Great leaders do not use ‘superlatives’ frequently. 

Unless you are American, “awesome” is something that leaves you in awe.  Like seeing the first moon landing.  Most things just are NOT awesome.  And your team knows that.  So they would rather hear you say they had put in extra effort, or the data on the project was very accurate, than have you say it was ‘awesome’, ‘great’ or any of the other meaningless through overuse, words.

Sound like you mean it. 

If you are empathising – you need to SOUND like it.  Otherwise, it is a platitude.  If you are enthusiastic – SHOW that you are enthusiastic in your voice, otherwise it sounds fake. 

Many leaders worry too much about the content they are delivering and not the delivery.  Public speaking skills are very helpful here and well worth investing in.

Authenticity is important. 

If you say X one day and Y the next you better be prepared to explain your reasoning.  It is fine to change your mind based on data, or circumstance.  But explaining and communicating that are critical.

Having the tough discussions and calling a spade a spade.

I am not talking about being unkind here.  I am talking about being clear.  If you are not happy with a teams performance, you need to explain why, what specifically needs to be improved, by when and how you will support the team to make the changes.   Bosses who expect their teams to infer what you mean by how you behave, are often disappointed, and then blame the team or individual for poor performance, instead of themselves for poor communication.

When you talk like a leader (even if you don’t yet feel like one) people listen to you.  When you convey your values, and vision clearly, then people start to see you are a leader.  And when other people start seeing you as a leader it increases your confidence and belief in yourself as the leader you want to be.

When you haven’t experienced something before it can be really hard to think about it logically, influenced as we are by our entrenched beliefs. Talking like a leader will help you think like a leader and vice versa. 

If you want this year to be your best year yet as a leader in your business or organisation, then come along to our free Kickstarter event and Unleash Your Quiet Leader Brilliance. 

Register Here – the date is Monday 18th January.  See you there!

Covid Virus

You Can’t Blame It All On A Virus…

How has your 2020 gone? 

I know – it’s probably not the year you (or anyone) had planned.  Who knew that we would face the situation we have, with a global pandemic and the on again off again tier levels and associated restrictions. 

In the early days of March and April, the world was almost on hold, holding its breath to see what was going to happen.  But very soon after that, businesses realised that life had to go on, and businesses had to keep operating, albeit in perhaps a very different way.

No-one would blame you for failing to make the impact you wanted to in 2020 or failing to move forward in the way you had planned to. 

However, not everything can be blamed on a virus. 

Many businesses have thrived in these challenging times.  And some of that is luck – they were in industries that weren’t as challenged as some others.  But not ALL businesses in a hard-hit industry have struggled and not ALL businesses in unchallenged industries have done well. 

You can’t blame it all on a virus.

There will always be challenges in business.  Some small.  Some – like the 2008 crash or the pandemic of 2020 – BIG.  But there will always be challenges.

Successful Leaders Do This

The leaders who are able to quickly grasp what is happening, who have the ability to quickly see what is needed and then take their people along with them as they rapidly change their business model, offering or processes to fit the new circumstances – they are the ones who thrive in any situation. 

And it takes guts, and leadership to do that. 

The relationship of trust that takes you and your team through a pandemic is the same as the relationship that helps you shine in the good times. 

It is always the time to be a great leader.  It is always the time to make an impact.  And it is always the time to lead by design. 

As we come to the end of another calendar year and get ready to make the best of this weirdest of Christmas times, it is also a time for reflection.

If you haven’t achieved what you wanted this year, if you haven’t made the impact you wanted or gained the ground that you had planned, then it is time to set out your stall for 2021 and make it happen. 

Don’t let your results next year be a surprise, even if they were this year.  Come and join our Facebook Community – Quiet Leaders With Impact – and make 2021 your best year yet, whatever is happening out there!

Merry Christmas and see you on the other side!

Huskies

Delegation’s What You Need!

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – Delegation’s What You Need!

I was speaking to a group yesterday – and what one of the group came up with was this question.  ‘If I am a precisionist, why do I find delegation so hard to do?’

Well, it’s obvious really.

But before we get to that – let’s look at the 5 main reasons quiet leaders don’t delegate.

  1. Fear that something will go wrong
  2. Believing it is quicker to do it themselves
  3. They don’t leave enough time to explain or train others before the deadline
  4. The fear others judging them as inadequate or dispensable
  5. They don’t build capability and capacity into their teams

And here are the 3 biggest reasons that you SHOULD delegate

  1. You are leaving your organisation open to the “bus risk”.  What I mean by that is – what happens if you get hit by a bus?  Not necessarily literally.  But what if you get sick, or someone you care for gets sick, or you break a leg, or just need a holiday.  Does everything pause while you are away, or are the team having to check in with you on the phone even though you are off?  Your team/organisation will be the loser if no-one can operate without you.
  2. You are risking staff turnover if you don’t give people opportunities to grow.  People need to learn new skills and take on more responsibility to feel challenged and needed in their role.  If you don’t give them that, they will eventually either walk away – or you wish they would.  By that I mean, someone who is not moving forward in their career is probably moving backwards and may end up being an underperforming problem for you to solve.
  3. You are holding yourself and your organisation back by distracting yourself or keeping yourself overly busy with stuff that someone else could do.  If you are not focused on the strategic – at least some of the time – then the chances are your organisation is surviving and not thriving.

Anyway, back to the story.  And you may be asking yourself – ‘what’s a precisionist?’

Well, as a ‘precisionist’ you want everything to be right, you are risk-averse and you are also probably a perfectionist.  And if you are a ‘precisionist’ then your natural inclination is NOT to give stuff away. 

The question came up – ‘how do I change that about myself’ and here’s the thing, you can’t really change how you are.

You can change your behaviour, of course, you can learn to accept some imperfection, for example, thought it will still get under your skin in all likelihood. But here is what you CAN do, in fact, what you MUST do.   

More important than your ability to change, is your ability to communicate with the person you want to start delegating to. 

If you don’t feel good about delegating, you will be unhappy and the person you have delegated it to probably will also not be happy.  They will pick up on your unhappiness, and if you haven’t communicated with them how you feel, then they may well assume that you don’t trust them, or you don’t think they are good enough. 

So – not only are you not comfortable with delegating, but the person ‘mind reads’ and fills in their own gaps.  And I guarantee they won’t think – ‘actually the problem is my boss is not comfortable with delegating.  They will think they are the problem.’ So, now you also have a staff morale and confidence problem.  Which probably mean they won’t be able to complete the task you have delegated.  And – CONGRATULATIONS – you have just become a self-fulfilling prophecy. 

However, it doesn’t need to be like that.

If you can communicate that you find delegating difficult, they will understand. Shock horror!  They won’t think you’re a loser and in fact, they will probably be relieved that the problem ISN’T them.  They will feel more comfortable, the relationship is improved, and the person involved will try and make things easier for you. 

You will then be able to express that you are stressed because you would usually do this task.  The other person will understand it is not about them and be able to reassure you that it is OK to feel like that, and they may even do stuff which means you feel more comfortable delegating.  They might check in with you about what they are doing along the way, for example.

This then gives you more confidence to delegate more.  And voila!  You have a virtuous circle and the luxury of being able to work ON your business and not in it.

If you’d like more leadership tips and strategies aimed at the Quiet leader – please go and join our Facebook Group Quiet Leaders With Impact