Maybe you’ve experienced it before: The dread of going into the office. Feeling completely helpless as the growing responsibilities of work stare you down. Paralysis ensues instead of action. Day after day this inaction breeds more and more anxiety. You start to wonder: "What happened?"
Four short months ago, you felt unstoppable. But now, you feel out of control and unable to achieve what you used to.
Welcome to burnout.
As leaders, we walk a very thin line between being an “effective manager” and “micromanaging.”
In reality, reflecting on how I’ve managed my team over the last few months got me thinking about this. In my efforts to be effective and focused, I constantly found myself asking my team a series of questions:
How long did that take?
How did that meeting go?
What do you have next?
How much longer do you think will this take you?
I’m a little frustrated with some of the myths out there about introverts and extroverts. Partly because I’m a struggling converted extrovert, and in part because I see these myths as barriers to doing our best work.
When we operate with these misunderstandings, we’re not able to tap into the true powers of our introversion or extroversion.
There is something so human about wanting to grow and achieve and do more. Yet this same natural human instinct that helps us grow and change and achieve also keeps us stuck. This desire causes burnout, depression and pushes us into a constant state of frenzied panic searching for the next big thing.
Could you handle being managed by a friend?
I’m sure it depends.
But practically speaking, everyday in an organization somewhere, someone is promoted to manage the team they used to be a part of. A startup hires a friend for the first time. Friendships develop after seven years on the job, and bam, you're now managing people who used to work next to you.
What if an employee couldn’t care less about the objectives of the organization? Is there a way to make them care a little more? Can they be put into something akin to Billy Blanks’ 9-week Fit Body Bootcamp (which, I still need to attend after the great relationship my grill and I had 4th of July weekend) for business?
I do believe there is a way to make an employee care about the objectives of the organization: Show them you care about their own personal objectives.
What do they want?
“Use your strengths!”
“Stop focusing on your weaknesses!”
“Just figure out where you offer the most value. It’s easy!”
Does any of this sound familiar? How about all of it?
It’s common to hear, for good reason. And, of course we want to use our strengths! We want our strengths to work for us. As humans, we need this. The feeling of success and breakthrough that comes from doing the work we’re not only best at, but also energized by.
When the first wave of the devastating tsunami struck the Japan shoreline in 2011 - thousands of people were caught off guard and unable to make it to safety. The loss of life that day was horrific but I wonder…. could it have been avoided?
2016 is done. 2017 is here...by now we’ve all at least thought about or had someone ask us about resolutions. Some of us have rolled our eyes while others have already rolled up their sleeves and are making progress.
Google tracked the top 10 most searched new year's resolutions last year….and these were the top 4
#1 How to get rid of stress
#2 How to make kale chips
#3 How much water should I drink to lose weight
#4 How to write a resignation letter
I play golf about once a year...maybe even every couple years. In my most recent round late this summer, I managed to shoot a 91.
For not having picked up a club in over two years - how I played was a strong performance. 91 isn't really an impressive score, but considering the average score of a golfer is about 90...I did alright.