Whenever you try something new it's worthwhile to consider what you've been doing and how that might get in the way.
This really holds true for managers who have been used to giving answers and now want to do more coaching. Or, maybe you've been promoted and inherited a group from the kind of manager that has made the members consistently look to you to solve their problems.
You may have encountered more indicators but here are four that come to mind:
- Lack of Initiative: Your people rely on you to get things rolling rather than risk making a mistake or failing.
- Lack of Confidence: You notice that people tend to ask you to do things for them instead of making decisions and taking action.
- Lack of Thoughtfulness: When there is an issue or a problem, people come to you for an answer vs. working through things and offering a possible solution.
- Lack of "Future Thinking": Both problems andopportunities slip through the cracks as a result of an inability to see the big picture or how things will play out, given certain circumstances.
What to Do?
1. Start by getting really clear with your team about who you are, how you want to operate, and what your expectations are.
2. Agree on the kinds of issues you're prepared to discuss and how you like them to be presented.
3. Over time, ask the group members to sketch out their own solutions and discuss them. During your time together, ask what other thoughts they have about the situation at hand.
Start seeing yourself as a manager who coaches. The results will be freeing for all of you.
Bonus: I believe you'll also want to read "Managers: Even When You Delegate, You're Still In it Together"