By now, you have seen the internet sensation Sweet Brown uttering her famous phrase, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!”
If you haven’t seen it – here is the link – and I apologize in advance because you won’t be able to get the phrase out of your head for the rest of the day.
So, what in the heck does that have to do with our corporate blog?
Well, a lot actually.
I had a coaching session the other day with a gentleman who was very frustrated about how his company made a very important decision that effected a large portion of how his team does their work. This was a big deal, with lots of moving parts, and lots of issues that needed to be discussed. Plus, there were different needs by everyone involved – yet no one except one or two decision makers made the call. There wasn’t a task force, a brainstorming session, or even an e-mail asking for feedback. Everyone knew this issue was being considered, but a meeting or feedback was never gathered.
Essentially you could say, for the person making the decision, and desiring to include others in the process…
“Ain’t nobody got time for that!”
Sadly, this is the case too often in companies and on teams. When all it takes is a little participatory involvement to get ideas from the team and have them feel a part of the process – it is overlooked – and one or two people make the call.
Not only does this cause greater disengagement, apathy, and low team morale – it doesn’t tap into the ideas and problem-solving capabilities of the people who are not only effected, but who actually have the best ideas for improvement. Why? Because they are the ones most closely involved, and most highly invested.
There are amazing freedom-centered companies out there, yet at the bottom of the lowest rung on the progressive company is the ability to include people, get their ideas, and see the value of having the most people possible a part of the process.
There are lots of reasons for not including people. Such as:
- It often takes more time
- It can be messy
- Breaks the facade of a leader having all of the answers
- Just plain ignorance
The first two can be true at first, but as time goes on and the culture is created – the team starts to operate more effectively and efficiently. They become problem-solvers, assertive, and less likely to need lots of meetings.
For the third one, this is a big deal (and so old school) because people equate their position with power – and needing to justify their position by having all of the answers. This is based on insecurity and managing to “cover your ass. ” Yes, most of us know that great leaders manage up – and include as many perspectives as possible. But, the ego can be a tough thing to kill.
As far as the fourth, if you don’t think there is a better way to do things, then you don’t know any better. That is ignorance. Ignorance is fine when there is willingness and receptivity.
The good news is – we can help with #4.
And – we got time for that!