Thursday, May 22, 2008

Fighting the Temptation to Control

If you struggle with control issues, here are a few suggestions:
  • Understand that releasing control empowers others.
  • Intentionally back off from time to time to see how people respond without you.
  • Stop doing things others can be doing.
  • Don’t manage the “how.” Evaluate the outcome.
  • After releasing responsibility to someone else, don’t re-assume responsibility because you didn’t like the outcome on their first attempt.
  • Do not permit inflexibility to have a foothold in your world or in the lives of people you lead.
  • As you release responsibility, be there for people like a father would be there for his child learning to ride a bike. But, don’t become obsessed with holding on to the bike. If my dad tried to run down the street with me for safety now as a 34 year old man, we’d both look foolish.
  • Teach people to do the same. If you’re a control freak. The people you work with will be as well. Empower your people and they’ll do the same.
  • Finally, understand that by choosing not to control, you will experience waves of creativity and high productivity. But, things will not look like you would imagine them to look. This is a good thing.

[Travis Johnson]

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