The LeadershipZone for better leadership

Get into the leadershipzone – practical tools and ideas you can use to improve your effectiveness as a leader or manager

A stone in my shoe

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Working on the garden landscaping at the weekend was hard work in the hot sunshine.  The great news is I had a team of willing helpers and we shifted barrow-loads of gravel, Victorian edging bricks that we have recycled, and created new beds for flowers, fruit and vegetables.

As the gravel chippings kept creeping into my shoes, I was reminded of the leadership role: when to manage the challenges that come into our lives, and when we need to stop and have a complete rethink.

It’s hard to work when you’ve got a stone in your shoe.  You can work around it for a while, but not for long.  There’s a time when you have to stop, empty your shoes and tie up the laces that bit harder.

As we run our organisations, we’re making the same decisions:

  • Do we live with things as they are?  I’m thinking of the much-quoted Pareto Principle: 80:20; I can live with 20% discomfort if 80% of the situation works.
  • Or does something demand a higher standard and send us back to the drawing board?  Sometimes another principle is more important: the best is the enemy of the good.

Does the situation demand the best, or is 80% good enough?  That’s what the leader has to decide.

So this week in the leadership zone, the tweet messages take on a gardening theme –

  • Monday – Mental Clarity – working in the garden gives me energy and the edge
  • Tuesday – Achievement – making clear priorities helps me achieve – do I feed the soil or water the plants?
  • Wednesday  – Challenges & Endurance – does the stone stay or go?
  • Thursday – Team Success – how do I support the people around me to flourish?
  • Friday – Renewal – which projects need to be finished so I can relax again?

Breaking our working week up into zones helps us focus on where we need to lead, achieve and succeed -and the results are so worth it:

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Author: Helen Caton Hughes

Leadership and Team Coach based on inspirational and practical tools. Works with leaders around the world; trains coaches to International Coach Federation standards. Passionate about finding best ways for leaders to inspire themselves and get the best from their teams

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