“We spend a lot of time teaching our leaders what to do. We don’t spend enough time teaching them what to stop.”
Here’s my small contribution on what to “stop doing” immediately. Please add your suggestions to the list.
My Start on the “Leader’s Stop” List (in no particular order):
1. Stop barking orders at people like you’re a drill instructor.
2. Stop expecting people to read your mind.
3. Stop making people feel like taking time off to go on vacation is a sin.
4. Stop multi-tasking when someone asks you a question.
5. Stop handing out only the negative feedback.
6. Stop dressing down people in public.
7. Stop saving all of your feedback for the annual performance review.
8. Stop letting people wander through their days with no context for the organization’s strategic priorities.
9. Stop ignoring people that you don’t like.
10. Stop showing that you don’t like people.
11. Stop reminding everyone that you are the boss.
12. Stop taking credit for the work of others.
13. Stop playing favorites.
14. Stop making everything “all about you.”
15. Stop forgetting to provide people fresh challenges.
16. Stop worrying about what your team members are saying to their co-workers about you. On second thought, maybe you should worry.
17. Stop declaring everything a crisis.
18. Stop blocking our access to people in other groups.
19. Stop managing by fear and intimidation.
20. Stop hoarding information on company and team performance.
The Bottom-Line for Now:
Go ahead and add some of your favorite “Stop” suggestions to the list. Not only was it cathartic, it might just be an effective alternative to dispensing a never-ending torrent of advice on what to do. The “Stops” aren’t quite as confusing and they are like a metaphorical kick in the seat of the pants.
If you’re a boss, see the list above and just stop it!