Yesterday I was coaching a member of my Microleadership 66 Day Day challenge who was feeling overwhelmed.
Let’s call him Shaun – mainly because that is his name!
Shaun has just been promoted to a new role, and the 66 Day Challenge has been helping him uplevel his thinking to cope with his new level of responsibility.
However, like many leaders he is still trying to fulfil his old role and his new one until he has recruited a replacement. Like many corporate businesses this was proving slower than hoped because the replacement was coming from another department and they did not want to release them until they had filled that gap – blah blah – you know how the story goes!
Anyway, Shaun was feeling overwhelmed because he was trying to do two jobs, tackle the demands of his new role, build relationships at his new level whilst still trying to stay fit and invest in his personal growth.
I asked Shaun one simple question. What would happen Shaun if you were taken out of your business today? What if Shaun was not the answer, what would the answer be?
He stopped and he thought…
“Well, one of my other supervisors (his Direct reports) would step up and take on my old responsibilities – in fact he did offer to help, and I said not yet”
“So, what’s stopping you from letting go?”
“I don’t know – I just think that is something I should be doing”
You see so many leaders like Shaun, are jeopardising their own success by focussing their energy and time on the wrong things. Too many put themselves as the answer to the immediate problems that they are facing, and in so doing place themselves between where they are and where they want to get to.
The job of a leader is not to be the answer to every problem the business faces. The role of a leader is to set the right challenges and then encourage your team to discover the answers.
Following our session Shaun reworked his entire plan for the month of September. I asked him what difference this would make – he reckoned he had saved himself about 1 day a week! 1 day that he could now devote to doing the work he should be doing to step up into his new role. 1 day that will take the pressure off and mean he is now able to spend some time with his family and go out and cycle more.
More than this he felt a flood of relief – the next wo weeks were looking incredibly challenging and daunting and now, they suddenly felt doable and inspiring!
Just by changing the way we think into what we do.
What could you achieve with an extra day a week? How much impact could you make if you had more time to focus on where you should be operating rather than being the answers to problems that you are not needed to solve?
Shaun has discovered a secret in just 25 mins that will help, if he chooses to apply it, him lead successfully for years to come!
If you feel a little bit like Shaun does maybe you should consider joining the next 66 Day Challenge?