I was trying to describe to someone a few weeks ago what it means when you are leading a team while at the same time fielding questions on how you deal with scenarios that might arise. In it’s most simplest forms you need to think of your team as your kids and if you’re the leader of that team, congratulations you are now a single parent.
How does that translate into what you’re trying to do?
- Your kid is having trouble with their homework? Are you going to fire them from 3rd grade? Probably not, you’re going to put in the time to work with them and help them overcome this hurdle.
- Your kid disturbing other kids? Are you going to kick this kid out of the park because of a couple of run-ins? Probably not, you’re going to sit them down, figure out what’s really going on and tell them to stop throwing sand.
- Your kid isn’t doing their chores? Are you going to start giving them less chores to do or better yet promote them to watching TV more? Probably not, you’re going to ask them to do it again and again until it clicks.
I could write another 50+ examples without breaking a sweat – but at the end of the day – you’ll have faith in your family to keep helping where help is needed. This isn’t about treating your team as kids, but rather reaching out to them in the say you would your own kids.
And that is the mindset you need to bring to leading a team;
- It’s not easy.
- You’re going to screw up.
- What you hope is going to work for all, will probably only work for some and you are going to need to retool your message.
- There will be last minute projects that will blow-up your own plans that you’ll need to step in and help out on.
- How do you turn the frowns upside down?
- When someone is stuck, don’t fire them, ignite them.
- Did I say you’re going to screw it up?
- What works for the many might now work for the few?
- Are you going to be their biggest critic or their biggest cheerleader?
It might not work all the time, but twist the model next time something bad comes up and ask yourself whether what else you would do if it was your own kid, then give it a try and light it up.