Nick McCormick has written a great new book on Managing called “Lead Well and Prosper: 15 Successful Strategies for Becoming a Good Manager”. I ask Nick to share a little below. Enjoy and Stay Sane!
"Just Say No"
A common complaint of managers and source of much job dissatisfaction within their ranks is the ever mounting workload. As organizations are flattened and belts tightened managers are expected to take on more job responsibilities resulting in additional time at the office. What is a manager to do?
Managers need to learn how to say no. If you don’t think you can take on additional work, and do it well, tell you manager. Give him/her the opportunity to help reprioritize your job responsibilities. Bring your own ideas to the table as well. If you’ve exceeded your capacity but continue to take on additional responsibility, you’ll have to work like a dog just to stay afloat. The team members won’t be happy, because they will be neglected. You won’t be happy, because there won’t be time to do the things necessary to perform well. You will resent the fact that you are putting in so much time, while the effort goes unrecognized. That’s right, your boss won’t necessarily be happy either. It’s all about results, which will suffer. Doing 2 responsibilities well is better than doing 3 or 4 poorly.
Say no to meetings. Block off time in your calendar at the beginning of each week, so people can’t schedule you for meetings. If they insist on scheduling meetings during your busy time reject them or send a representative. Managers should not spend all day in meetings. They need to get work done. They need to direct the team, teach team members, monitor progress, overcome obstacles, etc.
Saying no can strike fear into many managers. They think they’ll lose their jobs, or at the very least destroy any opportunity of promotion, if they don’t agree to everything with a smile. Surprisingly, most managers are fairly reasonable. If your management team isn’t, why stick around. Who would want to be promoted in an organization like that? Just keep those skills up to date and be prepared to move on if necessary.
Learn to say no and return some sanity to your work life. Return to working on the things that really matter and start achieving positive results and enjoying your job again.
Believe, Begin, Be Good!
Nick McCormick - author, Lead Well and Prosper: 15 Successful Strategies for Becoming a Good Manager - www.BeGoodVentures.com.