I recently met with a client who had just hired a new team member. They were hired in a revenue-producing role and after a month with the business hadn’t yet produced any income. Understandably the business owner was frustrated and looking for someone to vent to.
After listening for a period of time, it became clear to me what was driving some of the frustration – this business owner was extremely fast-paced. Those of you who have been following us for some time will know there is nothing wrong with this. We find most leaders are fast-paced due to the nature of their entrepreneurial skill sets. However, this isn’t always the case. And in most cases, the teams these leaders create are not fast paced either. (See our article on optimal focus times for more details on pace).
A fast-paced leader’s frustration comes from assuming their team work naturally the way they do (after all everyone should just be like us, right?!). And when realising this isn’t the case, a fast-paced leader doesn’t necessarily have the expertise to understand and support their teams to work more closely to their natural pace (unless they’ve already worked with us of course.)
When working with pace, we are talking about an individual’s natural use of energy. Forcing a person to work against their natural pace drains their energy stores significantly causing them over the longer term to become unproductive and putting them on a fast track to burnout.
In my example above, the team member in question was actually slow-paced. And after spending some time with them, it was clear they were feeling pressured, anxious and defensive about how they were being asked to deliver. Being slow-paced most definitely does not mean they won’t be successful or productive – quite the opposite. We simply need to find a way of working for them, which allows them to produce the required outcome.
How would you feel if you realised one, two, half or even all of your team were feeling this way? Would you brush it under the rug in the hope it would pass with time and they would eventually figure out how to work like you? How much will this cost you in not only monetary and productivity terms, but your personal energy drain also? You wouldn’t willingly just throw money away, so why do we do this in our business practices?
Or would you take the view of making an investment in your team and their personal energy (and therefore your business) for a return of increased productivity and profitability? Where would your business be in 12 months’ time if everyone in your team had an extra 2 hours of productive time per day with less effort
In the age of ‘self-help’ guides, I know I am always looking for proven strategies around making things just feel easier without substituting quality of output. If you are serious about making positive changes in your business and life in general, have a think about how you and your team becoming sustainably high-performing could revolutionise your next 12 months and beyond, and give Next Evolution Performance a call.
If you’d like to find out more, join the conversation in our next open workshop.