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You can be directive without being a jerk

You can be directive without being a jerk


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Managing A Team In A Directive Way

Sometimes, getting your team out of quicksand will require you to be more directive than empowering. Don't worry: we can still approach this in a way that drives buy-in and helps your teammates feel heard, and know they have autonomy. Sometimes, being directive is the most empowering thing you ca...

Identify What You’re Optimizing For

A manager has to ensure that the team has a clear roadmap with well-defined projects and deadlines.

To check this, managers can start by asking themselves:

 When you think about how you want to lead your team at this moment, what are you optimizing for?

Identify the Who, What, When, and How

Describe your role in outcomes, rather than describing how you will do your work.

Example: Ensure the team has internalized the project's timeline

  • Ensure each team member has a clearly defined individual role in this project.
  • Communicate to stakeholders when ther...

Communicate the Who, What, When, and How to Your Team

  • Avoid the word "accountable". Use longer descriptors to describe what you actually mean
  • What's going to happen, or be different, as a result of me doing this thing?

Example: "I facilitate standups on Mondays and Wednesdays."

Define the Who and What for Your Team

  • Describing your role in terms of outcomes will allow you to make informed "how" decisions that always tie back to the primary goal.
  • Identify your teammates' roles and responsibilities.
  • Block out time for this work.
  • Find one person who will be good at giving you gut-ch...

Nailing Down the When and How

If you need to communicate to particular individuals first: Prioritize communicating with different folks based on how much their reaction or input will affect your future messaging

Identify what's changing about how the team is doing their work and what's staying the same


Ask Open Coaching Questions

Before getting defensive, arguing, or shutting your teammate down, try spending five minutes using open coaching questions to understand where they are coming from:

What feels most important to you about this?

What is your gut telling you?

What one thing d...

Empowerment Vs Direction

  • As leaders, it's our responsibility to choose the approach in each new scenario that will work best for the work, the team, and the organization.
  • It's important for every leader to learn how to adopt a directive approach when it's the most effective option while maintaining the trust...

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created 4 ideas

A strong foundation with the right structure, people, and information-sharing can ensure that projects align with your organization and result in good decisions.



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