Guident Newsletter – June 2018 – Issue 25

Release that stranglehold you have on your company.

Most often when I am contracted to come into a business it is because The Boss has asked me to help solve a problem that has The Boss stumped. During one of my first conversations with The Boss, I usually state that the solutions are often found within the organization. I am most often told, “Not in my business, I have looked everywhere for the cause of the problem and I can’t find it.” It has been my experience that it doesn’t take long for someone from outside the organization with a fresh set of eyes to identify the issue(s). In a recent client call, I had to confront The Boss and say, “That stranglehold you have around the throat of your business is the issue!” The Boss looks at me with a bewildered look and then says, “What the heck are you talking about?” I am talking about the stranglehold The Boss has on the talent in the business, the smart knowledgeable people who know the issues and know some of the solutions but are not able to act because The Boss wants to control everything. The Boss has a stranglehold, a “death grip” around the throat of the business’s efficiencies, talent, innovation, and growth.

The personality of The Boss trickles down throughout the whole organization. If The Boss rules with a “death grip” it gives the management team free reign to rule with their own death grips and before you know it you and your management team have suffocated the organization, stifling productivity and growth. If you are one of these Bosses or are working for a Boss like this, you can identify with this image. The solution to the organization’s problems, loosen your death grip on the business and start to control the business as if you were using an “Ouija Board”. Remember the board game you might have played as a child, you lightly touched the Ouija Board and magical things began to happen. Well, I am suggesting that magical things can begin to happen in your business as you begin to loosen your stranglehold on the business and begin to control your business with a much lighter touch and let your smart knowledgeable team help you solve the problems. Re-establish a culture of cooperation and teamwork. This can be a bit awkward at first but your organization will welcome the new direction with open arms, especially when they see The Boss has already identified the issue and has bought an Ouija Board to practice with, only half-joking! Problems will always surface within a business; that is for certain. How you handle them and how you search out the solutions within your organizations is the real trick. If The Boss encourages his team to become proactive and identify potential issues, allowing them the autonomy to eliminate the root causes of the problems before they become problems, The Boss won’t need trickery. I might even suggest going out and buying an Ouija Board to frame and hang in your office just as a reminder, not joking!