A Difficult Story Which Must be Told
We have a friend who’s struggling at work, but not in the way you might think. It’s her boss who’s struggling, and our friend is facing the challenge of “managing up”. The boss is founder and CEO of a successful software company and our friend is one of his key executives. But the problem is the CEO still goes on sales calls. And he goes on sales calls at the worst possible time. It’s most often for a major account which is make-or-break for the quarter’s numbers and that’s when the CEO benches his extraordinary sales team and takes his rusty skillset into the closing meeting. The boss simply hasn’t learned how to put down the work and so he displaces his best employees, feeds his own sense of success, and very often sets the contract back several weeks. And the rest of his work, the things only the CEO can do, get ignored while he’s involved with the adrenaline of the sales call.
But the deeper problem is the CEO is a good guy. He’s smart, he loves the company, he’s proud of what he’s built and he’s fully committed to its success. And our friend is having real difficulty getting him to see the problem. Principally because the boss sees the delays he causes as fixing important things the sales team missed and which he caught in the nick of time. The CEO really believes he’s doing the right thing.
Does this sound familiar?
It’s hard to send someone else to do something you think you can do better. And it’s a real challenge when the success you've struggled to achieve means you can no longer do it all yourself. What do you do when you’re like our CEO? You’ve run out of bandwidth, you can’t do it all yourself, and you struggle with what to do. Or, more accurately, you struggle with what not to do. You struggle with what other people do. Ever wonder if there’s an actual effective solution? Is there a way to transition from the satisfaction of doing the work to finding fulfillment in making sure the work gets done? Does it have to be this way?
Putting down the work is actually quite difficult. At GlenHaven International we sometimes call it the dirty-hands-to-clean-hands transition. The CEO founded the company and built it into a success based on his love of the work. And that makes it very hard to put the work down. Particularly sales. But it is possible. In fact, it can be done in five weeks.
"Five weeks? Really?"
Don’t believe it?
“Putting Down the Work” is Week Five of the First Promotion Transition Certificate Course from GlenHaven International. And Week Six is possibly even more important for this CEO and those who struggle with letting others do the work - It’s entitled: “Week Six: Trust Has Nothing to Do With Them.”
Imagine this CEO working through just 20 minutes of instruction on a Monday and then spending the rest of week supported by an implementation exercise designed to show him how to make the concept his own. And after five weeks of rational progressive concepts, he'll be at a point where he can actually put the work down and unlock the full potential of his outstanding sales team.
Imagine if our friend took the course? As she worked through the progression of concepts and exercises, she'd not only gain fulfillment in her role as a leader, she'd also gain insight into how to coach him to be a more effective CEO. Maybe, as he sees her develop, and as she sharpens her "managing up" skills, he'll be inspired to join in.
Now imagine if you took this journey. By the time you hit Week Five and have put down the work yourself, your days of being accused of “micromanaging” will be behind you. And you’ll be ready for five more weeks of developing unique insights into advanced concepts like "Trust"; and "Leading Through Shared Intention"; and "Building Deep Diversity in your Workplace"; you’ll be on the high road to high performance leadership.
It’s possible. It’s right here. And all you need is the courage to take the first step into a new world of high performance. Don’t risk being left behind.