That’s just sad - I keep having the same observation once in a while:
Leaders that have already built some kind of position keep siloing the knowledge, power and initiative while blocking any decision-taking process in the same time.
What does it mean? Let me quote some typical phrases:
- "If anyone else does that, it will be crappy, I have to do that on my own."
- "Sure, I’ll tell you all of that as soon as I will go through all 1000 e-mails in my inbox."
- "No, no, no, no. This is something I didn’t approve, tell me what kind of fields would you like to add."
- "Ah well, it’s complex, don’t bother yourself, I’ll do it in the evening or on weekend."
In simple words - some leaders build their importance to the organization (or project) on becoming a bottleneck everyone depends on. This way they are always the most visible and they can enforce their ideas in a way everyone will notice the impact they make.
And that’s plainly dumb.
I admit, that was my basic instinct as well, but I keep fighting it (hopefully I do succeed, others will tell better) - to be frank, it was one of the hardest lessons to learn.
The problem with such approach is that:
- You’re killing any efficiency in your team (if you wonder why - check the Theory of Constraints).
- You’re killing any motivation in your team - because you eat up all the space people need to show their skills, so they will not self-develop (what for?)
- You’re killing any initiative in your team - people have to wait for you anyway, approve everything with you, they need no creativity on their side
- You’re killing yourself by doing everything on your own and having no slack-time and no recharge-time - I’ve committed a separate post on that already
That’s not really adding value - that’s under-utilizing your team and being simply not fair with them.
How are you supposed to show your quality then?
By building a *TEAM*. Because it’s teams that succeed, not individuals - combined mind-power of motivated team mates easily outsmarts even best individuals. How to do that? What to start with? Let me quote Ray Osherove (http://juristr.com/blog/2013/02/the-coaching-architect/):
Make yourself unneeded.
Delegate. Coach. Counsel. Motivate. Encourage. EMPOWER. Give feedback, make sure people achievements are visible and recognized.
This is what leadership is about.