How to Rise Above “I’ll do it Myself”
Individual contributors have impact by getting things done. Leaders have exponential impact by getting things done through others. But, it often feels easier to do it yourself.
Five reasons it’s easier to do it yourself:
- Quality. It’s done the way you want it to be done.
- No relational component.
- No communication confusion.
Three real reasons to do it yourself:
- You plan to keep doing it.
- It’s once and done. It really is quicker.
- You have unique technical skills. No one else is equipped.
When others should but can’t:
The work of leaders is the work of others. The first work of leaders is developing the team. It may be easier to “do it yourself,” but in the end you short-circuit exponential impact.
Develop the team or you’ll do the work yourself.
The door to developing others swings on modeling. Humbly live it yourself or shut up and go home.
Don’t neglect the behaviors you expect from others. Arrogant self-exemption closes hearts and minds, but, modeling enhances influence.
After modeling, teach others to combine strengths with contrasting qualities.
Navigate tension between:
- Decisiveness and listening.
- Focus and flexibility.
- Tenacity and kindness.
- Vision and openness.
- Kindness and candor.
- Passion and quietness.
- Analysis and initiative.
- Planning and people.
- Solitude and relationships.
- High expectations and helpfulness.
Listening frustrates decisive leaders. What’s the point of talking when decisions have been made. Teach decisive leaders to slow down and ask questions that explore purpose, align people, and weigh options.
The more important the decision, the more necessary inclusive listening becomes. But, weighty decisions often drive decisive leaders to make choices in isolation.
Listening is the pursuit of excellence
not leading by consensus.
Leaders who don’t develop the team end up doing it themselves.
How do you help others deal with tensions between corresponding qualities?
What others tensions can you add?
Reblogged this on Preston Byrd and commented:
Great article…thanks for sharing and reminding me to trust the great team around me! Knowing your strengths and weaknesses is key to efficiency, effectiveness as a leader, and, ultimately, your overall success both professionally and personally..
Best for the journey, Preston. (Dang that’s a cool name. :-))
Thanks Dan! I really appreciate you spending some time with me. Yeah I too think the name is pretty cool..thanks 🙂
Much appreciated…here’s hoping I can make similar significant strides through this journey of blogging as you and your blog have made…always inspired by your posts! ~Preston Byrd
I love the 10 tensions. Navigating between focus and flexibility is my particular challenge. Thanks.
I think I’ll write about that one tomorrow.
This is a great article. When we’re under pressure for accountability and deadlines, it’s easy to overlook.
There may indeed be times when you have the expertise, but you have to complete the task with transfer in mind. Create shadows while you complete the task, select someone at the threshold, or outright provide a training session, so the task can be passed on.
Our jobs are capacity, not completion
This is a great post! If we do it ourselves, our impact and influence will only reach as far as we can touch. By building a competent team, though, our impact and influence courses through a lasting, effective organization to touch the lives of countless more!
The overall concept of the blog I agree with 110%, what I struggle with is your “real reasons to keep doing it yourself”.
One and done, I get it!
“If you plan to keep doing it”
If I am hit by a bus where is the department/company now. I believe you need to release control not only for the growth of the person, but also to protect the company.
Why am I the only one with those “technical skills?” Shouldn’t I be growing someone else to make sure they have the technical skills as well.
No one knows the future, but we can have some vision and plan for it.
Reblogged this on IAm Synt and commented:
Awesome! Read and embrace it!
Don’t neglect the behaviors you expect from others. (This should be on a billboard on every major expressway in America)
Aggressiveness and deliberateness
Timelines and quality control
Inclusionary and Exclusionary (in terms of decision making…)
Control and Collaboration
People and products/outcomes (in terms of whats more important)
Creativity and Control
Risk and Effectiveness
Another homerun! Must reblog!
Doing it myself speaks more of a managerical quality not that of a leader. A leader coaches and mentors his team to do…
Managers are leaders too. This applies to managers as well ;o)
Teaching a chapter on listening tonight to college freshment and this will be a great reference for me to freshen up the content!
Re: The 3 ‘real’ reasons to do it yourself…because you are selfish, short-sighted, and not a leader. (Too direct Dan!?)
A role of the leader is modeling…for the future leaders. What you do is what you teach and what others will become.
Absolutely leaders need to guide/steer the ship in the here and now and that does contain some elements of DIY, however, one more role (of many roles) is also to see who else has potential to guide and provide them those opportunities to lead, safely fail, and learn.
Humbly live it because one day, sooner than you can imagine, you still have to shut up and go home and what have you left in your wake?
Re: the 3 ‘real’ reasons to do it yourself… I was wondering when you would come out of your shell! 🙂
I like to be direct but today I think you are the winner.
As always, I appreciate your insights. “What you do is what you teach…” KaPow
Who you be, who they see
I struggle with this with regard to projects I have started. It is hard to “let go” and let someone else do it. A friend of mine explained that I “gave birth” to it and that was why it was so difficult to let go.
I can’t say that I have overcome it yet, but I am working on it.
Sooner or later your kids grow up and go off to college, workforce etc. and they still grow and become outstanding citizens.
WOW another great one, no one likes micromanagers.
Have a good day.
Everyone knows that “Do as I say, not as I do.” is an ineffective leadership style. Your phrase “Arrogant self-exemption closes hearts and minds….” adds real emphasis to this point.
Leaders have exponential results when they duplicate themselves. Thoughts ideas beliefs.
SP back to now!!
Excellent article ! Your team is essential to your success.
The job of the leader is to show the way, to motivate the team.
Yup…doing it myself is much quicker. But it also is not personal. Doing ‘it’ myself completely eliminates the opportunity for me to rise up a new leader, or empower someone to use their spiritual giftedness. Nice post.
Thanks for sharing
I find the paradox tensions intriguing. They are often the tensions that keep both leaders and organizations from moving forward. Here are some of the other tensions that I see:
Big picture/what’s needed today
Leadership that’s too strong/Indecisive too nice leadership
Resource management (being over staffed or bloated/Cutting too deeply into the resources so that work can not done well
I am sure that this is not all there are. Who has more to add?
Last line says it all for me: “leaders who don’t develop their team end up doing it themselves” HR is a part of the solution, but when it comes right down to it, those one-on-one relationships are where the rubber meets the road.
What a timely post. I ended up doing quite a bit on an event that 5 people were involved in. The event was put together quickly, so it was easier for me to do it this way. Communication was slow between all of us so trying to get involvement was laggy. I learned a lot about the process of putting on the event so I know what needs to be organized. I also learned that it sucks doing it all yourself. For the next event it will be decided early on who will do what and when it will need to be done. I want to be a true leader. Learning is part of that process. Thanks for sharing this post. I’m always grateful for your insight.
This is a great lesson in how to be the CEO of your sole-proprietor business.