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: