The greatest ally…

Training Primary Care - NHS - GPs - The greatest ally...

‘Just get Brexit done…’

Get it over with… whatever… just do it‘.

A couple of lines; page one, chapter one, from the book of management by bullying and frustration.

How many times do we hear;

‘Don’t bring me bad news, Just Go Do It’.

Two errors in one phrase.

‘Bring me a deal, any deal’… explain that to your grandchildren.

Just get it done‘… invites cut-corners, short-term, risk taking, disaster and forgets one of the top talents of great management and leadership… patience.

In our-NHS, as pressures mount to deliver, targets get tighter and regulator’s expectations get more unreasonable… patience soon runs out.

It’s a bad sign when people say, ‘I’m sick of the indecision just do something, anything‘.

That means people have disengaged and when employees disengage, we are in trouble.

It’s bad news in politics, when the public disengage from the conduct of the nation’s affairs and it is bad news in the management of an organisation, an office or a team, when colleagues disengage.

Do ‘anything’, because ‘anything’ is better than the vacuum of indecision, risks the vacuum being filled with the wrong things, desperate decisions, rumour and a whole chain of thinking that leads us down the pathway of regret.

Leaders, boxed-in by tough challenges, are easily frustrated and that frustration flows into their decision making. When you run out of ideas, you run into trouble. Lose objectivity and you’ll lose control.

Try to hang-on to objectivity, step back and see the problem through they eyes of the people most affected. It’s not a bad idea to talk with them, either!

Ask, where the trigger points are. The pinch points, the congestion points? How are they being managed? Go and find out. Stay open-minded and you may find that’s where you need to concentrate your efforts.

It takes patience to find out.

Being patient means being a good listener. An active listener; asking questions and be sure you really hear the answers. It’s not a process that can be rushed.

It needs, guess what… patience.

If your patience is wearing thin, what do you do? To start with, don’t pretend you know all the answers. Rush a decision based on your own best guess… you’ll probably be wrong.

It’s a good idea to talk to trusted friend, someone who has been through a similar set of circumstances.

Still running on a short-fuse? Give yourself a check-up, from the neck-up… is it your fault?

People you are working with will have their pace-of-work. Often, that pace is dictated by the processes or systems they have to cope with and are powerless to change.

You may have to change the processes.

They will have a rhythm in their approach, able to do things well, with a timing they are comfortable with. Rush them and they’ll cut corners, make mistakes and you will pay the price.

Don’t confuse progress with productivity. Be patient.

Leaders create the time and space for good people to do great things and sometimes that will require encouragement, guidance, tolerance and yes… patience.

It’s tempting to push people under the guise of ‘stretching’ them, ‘creating opportunities’, well, maybe… but get it wrong and you’ll end up with dysfunctional people and a dysfunctional organisations. Better to be patient.

If you want to grow something, a plant, a person or an organisation… it takes patience.

Patience doesn’t mean abandoning targets, schedules or not finishing on time…

… it means thoughtful planning and creating the environment where people can make their contribution, play their part, in the way they work best. Be patient and encourage people to be on top of their game.

Short-notice can be delivered when you know your people well and how to get the best from them and your colleagues. Play to their strengths.

The role of the manager as leader is often framed in the context of decisions, decisiveness, action, doing stuff and getting things done. Underpinning all of these qualities, is patience. If you think yours is running short… this might help .

More patience means more time, better decisions, better relationships and well worth the effort.

Get patience on your side and you’ll control the agenda.

Of the three skills all top managers have; simplicity, compassion and patience… patience is the greatest ally.

News and Comment from Roy Lilley

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Reproduced at by kind permission of Roy Lilley.