I was running through the woods at Eagle Creek Park last Saturday with a good friend. I had sensed something was off in our relationship, so I asked him if there was anything I was doing that was making life harder for him. Over the next several minutes he calmly described two of my habits that weren’t working for others around me, or for him.
I’m going to let you in on a little secret…
I hate failing! I hate looking like I don’t know what I’m doing or that I wasn’t adequately prepared. I usually try to avoid that at all costs. I was reminded of this pattern just a few weeks ago during a staff meeting. During a spirited exchange of ideas, I just sat there. I had thoughts and opinions running through my head, but I was silent. In that moment, I realized 3 things about my relationship with failure.
Lately I’ve had three experiences that have led me to the same conclusion: it’s time to step up my game as a leader…
In the last post (When Accountability Backfires) I asked,
Why do I still turn off my office lights religiously, while I have not continued with DuoLingo?
Thank you for your insightful comments to that post. I love this tribe of savvy and sharp thinkers. You are an amazing community, and I’m grateful.
Here is my summary of the theories you all have offered…
I used to forget to turn off the lights in my office. When my wife Kim noticed, she turned them off for me.
One day she got tired of this routine and stuck a post-it note on the light switch to remind me to flip it off when leaving. It started off as a joke, including a tally of how many times she had to deliver her “lights off service.” It was very effective, until I ripped it off the wall in frustration.
According to reports I’m hearing, my experience applying for a policy on the federal Health Insurance Marketplace has been pretty typical – I’ve spent many hours navigating the site and trying to get help from well-intentioned customer service reps with no more power or knowledge than me.
Thanks to my good friend Kris Taylor from K. Taylor & Associates for hosting me as a guest on her site. You can read my post on The XYZ Sandwich there.
If your organization makes good decisions quickly and without looking back, then please carry on smartly. But I have found that poorly-defined decision rights are at the root of many dysfunctional team dynamics.
We were going at it cats and dogs. Jim had hired me to run a change project for a client, and our views on how to best support the client were diametrically opposed. We were both frustrated, and fiercely arguing our points of view.