Friday, June 24, 2016

A Managers Dilemma---When Are You Racing to Nowhere?

Are you really racing or treading water?

Managers who have a direction and purpose in their work find they have a long-term goal and know a path of getting there. Their work represents purposefulness and they spend time on aligning their goals to that of the organization. Unfortunately, there are also other managers who are running a race to get somewhere but have no idea where they are going.

Consider the well intentioned manager that has lots of busy work and continues to focus on expanding their projects and work until they put themselves and everyone else under stress. Most of what they do doesn't have much of a direction and likely won't help them or their organizations.

Purposefulness means that they maximize their efforts on those projects that are likely to improve on their career goals and minimize efforts on those projects that have little additive value. Being busy to be busy is a waste of time and stressful. It is better to figure out what projects have the greatest impact and spend your time making that one, or two, great.

We also come across a problem where managers don't have an idea where their career paths are leading. They must ask themselves are they doing the right things, are they seeking greater opportunities, does their organization provide a stepping stone, and are they learning the right skills. If they can't definitively say yes then they need some more work.

Taking ownership over your career can be helpful and empowering. It will allow you to start working in a purposeful manner and get more things done. It is helpful to think about your five and ten your plan and then focus on the steps you need to get there. The more busy work you throw on your plate that isnt helpful, the more you are holding yourself back.

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