Are You a Control Freak?

Are you the type of leader who’s in charge – or are you the control freak who drives all your subordinates crazy?

A good leader will create a work environment where subordinates feel that they can trust the leader to have their backs because he or she trusts them to do their work.  Good managers will insure that standards and policies are followed while also encouraging creativity and innovation.  As the leader you are responsible for insuring the success of the organization.  (Let’s not forget Aunt Nellie and the other stockholders.)  How you go about achieving that success will reflect on the organization.  Are you comfortable with being in charge or do you have to control every single detail of virtually every task of the organization?  When someone describes a problem that was resolved, is your first reaction to say something to the effect of, “What you should have done was . . . “ What message did you just give the other person?  (By the way, it’s easy being the Monday morning quarterback.)  When someone shows you a written communication do you immediately start to re-write it?  Do you say something to the effect of, “Well, I suppose you could say it that way but it’s better if you say this…(my way).”

As a leader who’s in charge, when a subordinate describes a problem area and resolution, LISTEN FIRST.  Compliment the effort.  If there were areas of improvement noted, ask how the leadership or management team can work together to implement new approaches to resolving the problem.  End the discussion with another compliment.  It can be something as simple as thanking folks for their hard work and dedication.  If you stop the “I’m in control and everyone had better realize it” nonsense you just may discover how much easier it is to hire and retain quality individuals who are dedicated to the long term success of the organization.  You and your stockholders will be amazed at the success of the organization if you stay in charge.  If you remain the Control Freak, you’re going to become overly familiar with the same old problems and Aunt Nellie will have more than enough ammunition to ruin a lifetime of lunches with you.

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