date. november 09, 2022
loccation. the concrete jungle
inkling.13 | Copyright © Stefano Di Lollo
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Have your workhorse tendencies become your biggest leadership blind spot?
While the dangers of burnout remain very real and studies continue to reveal frightening statistics about how many people are overwhelmed by their workloads to the extent of experiencing anxiety and depression, I've also observed a sense of pride from self-proclaimed workhorses at all levels. It's not uncommon for people to proudly confess how many hours they put into their work on a weekly basis. Personally, I like to think that I have a very healthy relationship with work and perhaps an intense workload is much easier to bear when one truly feels energized when engaging in passion-driven work. In my case, I love work and I think that it's a healthy aspect of my life.
That having been said, I also feel that so many people take on more work than they should for the wrong reasons. In fact, one of the most common complaints that I hear from clients is that there is never any time to focus on the work they should be doing because they're too busy doing other people's jobs. When your team doesn't deliver the results expected, doing the work for them (rather than guiding or supporting them) isn't leading by example, it's robbing them of an opportunity to overcome challenges, learn, improve, and grow. To make matters worse, your team may now have become accustomed to being dependent on your interventions to get things moving forward.
I won't attempt to use this brief post as an opportunity to offer detailed strategies, nor do I want to resort to makeshift "quick tips" or "one-size-fits-all solutions" for a topic that requires deeper exploration and context. Rather, I create inklings as visual catalysts to spark real conversations whether it's in the public comments posted on social media, via direct messages, or in person. Share your thoughts and experiences.
*Every week I create & post a visual representation (an inkling) inspired by my work as an executive coach & leadership development facilitator.