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Handling A Narcissist at Work

Handling A Narcissist at Work

Handling A Narcissist at Work

At some point in your working life, you will work with a narcissist.  You might be managing them, they might be managing you or it may be a colleague at your level, but there will be a day when you realise you are working with a narcissist.  It might even be you.  No seriously, I’m not accusing you of anything. 

You see, here’s the thing.  Most people exhibit narcissistic traits from time to time.  It is normal to want attention or approval.  It is common to see yourself or others through rose-coloured spectacles.  And It is natural to want to see the bright side.  And it can be helpful to feel a bit special.

That in itself gives the confidence to take risks, to ask that special person out, or to ask for a promotion.  But when that ‘feeling special’ extends to all of the time, then things can get out of hand. 

Are All Narcissists Full of Themselves?

Not all narcissists are obvious ‘preeners’ and they don’t all care about looks, or money or fame.  You can find narcissists who are devoted to others.  Their whole life is about how much good they do – they are martyrs, self-sacrificing to the point of being extremely annoying to us ‘lesser mortals!’.

There are also ‘introverted narcissists’.  Those who feel hypersensitive to even gentle criticism, and need constant reassurance.  The way they feel ‘special’ is to be worse than everyone else – more ugly – more ill – more problems.

What is a Typical Narcissist?

And then there are the typical narcissists – those who are charming and motivated, who drive others to results – all good stuff until they are crossed or feel threatened.  At which point they can turn into raging monsters who will not back down and will not be satisfied until they receive a grovelling apology. 

What they all have in common is ‘self-enhancement’.  They believe their very thoughts set them apart from others.  This feeling of superiority soothes them because under the surface they have a fragile sense of self. They may feel superior to others but that doesn’t mean they feel secure in themselves or happy with themselves.

Narcissists Can be Prone To Depression

It may surprise you to know that narcissists are prone to depression.  When reality catches them up and they glimpse at a world that does not recognise their greatness, they can react by becoming depressed. Loss of any kind is difficult for anybody, but for the narcissist, it suggests vulnerability and weakness – which is not part of their image of themselves.

Of course, there are levels of narcissism – but diagnosis of clinical narcissism is fairly rare – 0.5% – 1% of the population.  Any such traits spring from a deep-seated insecurity and fragile sense of self-esteem.  This behaviour pattern comes from a childhood where success and achievement were not recognised or were never enough, or the child was told not to brag for example.

Narcissism is a highly inheritable trait and like anything can be encouraged or curbed depending on formative relationships. Environment also has a part to play – with one study showing rates of narcissism up to 4 x higher in competitive New York for example, as opposed to Iowa. And children learn quickly if a parents love and attention is only available when expectations are met.  Highly competitive environments encourage ruthless behaviours – and that’s where narcissists flourish.

So How Do You Deal With A Narcissist At Work?

Well, there are a few tips below.

  1. Set clear boundaries and do not budge on them.  A narcissist will encroach on people to the level they accept being encroached upon. 
  2. Let go of your ego and the need to ‘fight back’ or ‘be right’.  It will never work with a narcissist.  So don’t go head to head – unless it is essential.  But if you do – then expect retaliation.
  3. If it doesn’t matter – let them think they are right.  But don’t be a pushover, unacceptable behaviour is unacceptable behaviour, whoever is dealing it out. Get HR involved if boundaries are being overstepped. 
  4. Try not to need them.  If they are indispensable to you, they will know it and use it to manipulate. 
  5. Be compassionate.  They have a problem.  It could be a serious mental disorder, or a minor personality defect – but they have a problem.  It was caused in their childhood.  It’s not you – it IS them.  So be kind!
  6. It’s not all bad.  Motivated narcissists can make things happen and if you are along for that ride, it can benefit you too!

And so you can see, narcissists are not the easiest of people to manage or be managed by.  If you are having trouble dealing with someone in your workplace and you think they might exhibit narcissistic tendencies – we can help.  Drop us a line at julie@thinkbedoleadership.com

female programmer with glasses

The Problem With Being Good At What You Do

I was talking recently on LinkedIn Live – about why being good at what you do can be a big issue. 

So maybe you are in IT, or engineering, or you are a vet like someone I was speaking to today.  And you have AMAZING skills.  You possibly went to University, or trained on the job so that you are an expert in your skillset.  And that all works well whilst you are doing the job you are trained in.

But now it has become a problem for you.

Because now you are “the Leader”.  And the job of a leader is to get better results out of people than they could do by themselves.

To step up into leadership, you need a whole new bunch of skills, that are completely different to those of a technician. 

Maybe you, like the vet, are growing a business. And that means you need to grow a team of managers, never mind a team of technical specialists.  And here is where it gets REALLY tricky.  Because as a technician, you may have been leading by example.  The team below you is learning how to be a technician from you. And because you are superb technically, the team below you are also pretty good technically.

But what happens when you are trying to grow other leaders?

The new leaders / managers in your business will look to you to understand how to lead.  Now if they learn from you being a technician and managing a team – that is what they will do. 

So they won’t really be stepping up to be great people managers. They will be great at showing people what to do technically. But that is not all there is to being a leader. 

That won’t work.

Because you are the business owner.  So if you manage by doing and leading by example, you will probably find yourself working very long hours. You might be working weekends, and maybe not going away on holiday or having ‘laptop prioritised holidays’ because everything might fall apart if you are not there.  Does this sound familiar?

You may be thinking that excessive hours come with the job of being the leader.  But you could not be more wrong.  The reason you are working all the hours God gave, is because you are not managing, you are DOING.

And that is not a model you can hand down to the managers you need to step up in your business.  Why would they want to follow that example? 

What is Leadership?

Leadership is about setting the vision, It’s about managing the motivation and skill levels of your team; hiring the right people; having the right structures in place; understanding your market and what it needs, and what the future might look like.  It’s about setting company goals and plans, and about allowing and facilitating people to grow.  It’s about strategic thinking. 

And all the while you are stuck there (yes I do mean stuck), doing the doing, then you won’t have time to do the thinking that is required to grow a highly successful team and company. 

So, you need to change how you think, how you show up and what you are doing. 

This is what we do on our Leaders Launchpad.  It can be difficult as a techie, but actually it probably means you are going to be a great leader. Techies have great core skills – such as attention to detail, project management, time management and more. You just need to learn how to apply them in a different way. 

So if you want to discover how you can grow you, to grow your team and ultimately grow your business then reply to julie@thinkbedoleadership.com We can hop on a discovery call and talk about how the team at Think Be Do Leadership can help you through group or individual coaching – to ultimately grow your skills as a leader, without losing the love of what you do.

Boring meetings

Another Meeting – What A Waste Of Time!

The Reasons Why Most Meetings Are A Waste Of Time!

How do meetings impact your business?  The reason I was talking about this today on LinkedIn Live, was because I was talking to a partner in a vet practice.  He was bemoaning the fact that the team have all these great ideas, and talk about stuff they say they are going to do, but ultimately none of it actually gets done.

The discussion turned to what is actually happening in their meetings. And it’s a similar story to many businesses I talk to.

So many people tell me how they hate meetings as they see them as a waste of time, something to be endured and not enjoyed.  And the reason they hate them is that nothing productive actually happens.  Bob is always complaining.  Felicity is always talking too much and “I” can’t speak, because I get shouted down.  James doesn’t want to be there and sits there with his arms crossed and zoned out! It’s all a disaster.

And that sums up the problem with most meetings – there is bad behaviour, there is a lack of commitment and there is no real strategy.  And here’s the harsh truth.  The state of your meetings reflects the state of your business. 

If your meetings are unengaged, unproductive and everyone feels they are a waste of time, the chances are the rest of your business will be the same.

So how do you turn this state of affairs into having ‘Perfect Meetings’.

  1. Instead of Bad Behaviour – we want people turning up as adults in our meetings.  So, we need to create adult-to-adult conversations and make the standards of behaviour clear.  
  2. Instead of no strategy, we need to focus and prioritise.  We want to be able to work on the important things.  If we don’t then we end up talking about nothing that matters.  If you only hold meetings to deal with important stuff then people will turn up with a different mindset.  They will feel the time has been well spent, useful and that they have learned something, or had an impact, or been listened to.
  3. And instead of a lack of commitment (which is born out of the lack of purpose and the bad behaviour) to do the things they have said they will do – we want ACTION and IMPLEMENTATION. If people show up and do what they say they are going to do, then it is massively powerful. It makes people feel empowered and energised, and they are more likely to look forward to the next one!

If you can create that sort of business, only meeting to discuss important things, with engaged people who go off and implement something – then you are going to not only have more productive meetings, but the business itself will be moving forwards.

So, do you have a strategy for your meetings, do people show up as adults, and do your people have the commitment to taking action?  Perfect meetings create a better business.

If you would like to watch this live – check it out here.  And if you want to find out more about how we deal with these issues in the Leaders Launchpad, drop me a quick message to julie@thinkbedoleadership.com

The Rythym of Business

And The Rhythm Of Life Is a Powerful Beat…

And The Rhythm Of Life Is a Powerful Beat…

I’ve always loved that Sammy Davis Jr song.  The rhythm of life.  It is powerful isn’t it when you get in a rhythm?

For me being in a rhythm means life is easier.  Things happen when they are supposed to.  And they happen how they are supposed to.  Life can move forward in a purposeful direction.

Rythym in Business?

The same can be said about business.  When you have a rhythm to the business, things happen in the way they should, in a pro-active and not re-active way.  You don’t have to recreate the wheel, you have the recipe, and more importantly – so does your team.

There is a difference between knowing the cake you want to make and actually having the recipe.  If you ask 5 people to make a chocolate cake, you will probably end up with 5 different chocolate cakes (yum!).  And though they may all be delicious; they may not all be what you had in mind.  In fact, none of them may turn out the way you wanted.

Perhaps you are vegan, so you need to use specific ingredients.  Or you are lactose intolerant so need to avoid cow’s milk.  If you are diabetic you might need to use a sugar substitute, and if you just hate dark chocolate then you need the cake to be milk chocolate.  Then there is how many people is it for?  No point making a beautiful but tiny cake for a party for 20 people. 

Unfortunately, this is all too often what happens in business.

The team are told what the end result should be (a cake – or more probably – a report, a product, a service!!).  But they are not told how to get there – they aren’t given the recipe.

What happens then is that there is no rhythm.  People will do whatever they think.  Or maybe they won’t do it at all because they are fearful of getting it wrong. 

Confidence is created when people have the recipe. 

When you are a very experienced cook, and you have been taught the recipe(s) – then sometimes you can go off piste and just make it up as you go along, and mostly that might be OK. 

But we are actually not talking about cakes here.  We are talking business outcomes.  And as the leader of the pack – your job is to create those business rythyms, which mean that people have clarity on the procedures, the processes and the expected outcomes. 

When they have this clarity, it builds confidence.  And when they are confident – then they can produce the results that you want without you having to be there every second of every day.

Now doesn’t that sound nice?  Puts a tingle in your fingers and a tingle in your feet……

Get in touch if you want any help putting the rythym into your results! julie@thinkbedoleadership.com

Frogs Taking Time Out to relax

How To Take More Time Off As A Business Owner 🥂

How To Take More Time Off As A Business Owner

Something I keep coming across with my new clients is the common theme of – never being able to take a holiday or even a day off.  They fear that if they are not there everything will fall apart.  And worryingly – sometimes it does.

Why does this happen?

Generally, it is because the people involved are either not confident, or not motivated to execute decisions without the boss being there.  They don’t want to get it wrong, so they don’t make a decision.  Or they don’t really care.  Possibly – they have had a bad experience of being criticised or even penalised for getting something wrong, so they would rather not try.  The root of these problems is often the same thing.  The leader has not developed themselves to the point where they can develop their teams.

The Accidental Leader

No – I’m not referring to the accident-prone.  What I mean is that much of the time people who end up as leaders got there accidentally. They did not intend to ‘be a manager’, perhaps they never thought of themselves in that way or it wasn’t an ambition of theirs.

However, they were good at what they did, maybe one of the best, and so they got promoted.  Or they decided to open up a business for themselves doing the thing they were brilliant at.  Whichever way it went – they ended up managing other people.  And they had probably never been trained in how to do that.

You see, there are some (not many) people who are ‘natural leaders’, but even the natural leaders benefit from having some training and development. 

Natural Leaders

Here’s the thing!  Most people are not natural leaders, let’s be honest.  And so, what happens is – they suddenly find themselves managing people with no real clue how to do it.  And they are busy.  Busy learning their new job or learning how to run a company.  There is so much to do, they suddenly need to master a whole new set of skills and learn about things they never needed to know before when they were just ‘doing’ the job.

They need to know about the finance, the IT systems, the suppliers, the marketing, reporting at a different level.  They need to find out more about how business in general works, not just their previously tiny part of it. 

And the thing they don’t have time to do (or think they don’t have time to do) is to develop their team.  And they are quite right.  They need to focus on developing themselves first before they will learn how to manage themselves and train up their future leaders. 

The Enlightened Leader

The temptation, if the business owner is enlightened enough to have the foresight to understand that the team needs developing – is to put those people on a ‘management’ course.  But how is that supposed to work, if they themselves have never been on such a course? 

What happens is the newly educated team leaders come back into the business with some great ideas and the manager won’t let them implement anything – because they haven’t been on the course!

And this is why things go wrong and they work too hard and can’t have a day off. 

You see – they DO need to train their leaders / future leaders, but they ALSO need to train themselves.  On an airplane they tell you to put your own oxygen mask on first otherwise you won’t be able to help others.  Well, the same applies in business.  If you sort out your own development- then you will have the skills and knowledge to develop others.

If you are really clever though, you can do both at the same time.  This not only saves time on the learning curve, but it also means everyone is learning together, setting goals and plans in place together and working as a true team.

In response to this very common problem, I have developed a bespoke team performance course, which incorporates training and development for you AND your leaders or future leaders in the business.  If you would like more details email me on julie@thinkbedoleadership.com

And meanwhile – book yourself some time off – you deserve it!

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