I’ve been teaching managers to coach employees for about four years. One thing is obvious. Overworked managers pressure themselves in self-defeating ways.
Successful managers make others matter more.
Seven ways to be overworked and under-appreciated:
- Give the first answer, when people come to you for solutions. The answer you give, you own.
- Feel responsible to solve other people’s problems for them. Compassion is poison when it does what others should do.
- Do other people’s jobs for them.
- Be afraid to press for action.
- Don’t hold people accountable to their commitments.
- Let people do things they aren’t good at.
- Get sucked into drama.
Bonus: If you’d like to be overworked and under-appreciated, ignore the elephant in the room. Working around elephants creates more work. In the end, it’s your fault you didn’t deal with it.
Powerful questions that make others matter more:
Forget about perfect questions. Simple questions do the job.
5 questions to elevate engagement:
Others matter more when they’re engaged.
- What’s on your mind?
- What do you think?
- What are you learning?
- What should I know?
- What am I missing?
You’re overworked when you don’t engage others by asking questions.
5 questions to create options:
Others matter more when they create options.
- And what else? (The A.W.E. question.)
- Tell me more. (So that’s not really a question.)
- Who might know?
- If you did know? (Use this when people say, “I don’t know.”)
One reason you’re overworked is you talk too much and listen too little.
5 questions to help others move forward:
Others matter more when they move forward.
- What’s next?
- Now what?
- What’s the next step today?
- What matters now?
Bonus: I hear what you can’t do. What can you do?
“Telling” makes work for you. Asking makes others matter more.
How might managers find greater success by making others matter more?
How do you elevate engagement, create options with others, and help others move forward?