May 3, 2011

Achieve More by Doing Less

“The secret of concentration is elimination” – Dr. Howard Hendrick’s

It’s natural for leaders to try and do too much – and doing too much is what limits effectiveness.  The two best kept secrets of great leadership are;

1. The less you do, the more you accomplish.

2. The less you do, the more you enable others to accomplish.

I have a narrow set of leadership skills.  I like to create good content, communicate it and coach others to succeed.  That’s it!  I like to lead an organization and not manage its many moving parts.  That’s why I have exceptional team members who specialize in my weaknesses.  I do what I do best and so they can do what they do best.  Simple in concept but very hard to achieve.

SECRET ONE: Consider our first secret: “the less you do the more you accomplish”.  As long as I lead by creating good content, communicating and coaching primary leaders – I accomplish more.  But if I go outside of my gift mix, I accomplish less.  In my coaching practice I have found this is the number one challenge to doing less and achieving more.  Leaders feel guilty if they are only doing what there most gifted to do.  It’s seems too good to be true- and yet this is the only way to do less and accomplish more.  When we stay in our gift mix we also open the door for others to succeed. Which leads us to our second best kept secret.

SECRET TWO: When I do what I am best at – I open a door for others to do the same.  We must understand that when we step away from what we do best we diminish our effectiveness and the effectiveness of every other leader in the organization.  Let them lead!  Let your team have full expression of their gifts and everyone wins.  More will be accomplished with greater passion and fulfillment.  People will feel accomplished in their work and reach new heights of personal growth and advancement.  

Here’s how to ensure your achieving more by doing less:

1. Reduce your job description to one page with the primary roles and responsibilities that match your gift mix.

2. Make a list of items to eliminate or delegate to a more qualified team member.

3. Ask your team members to do the same.

4. Determine in team discussion how to re-assign areas that don’t match people’s gifting.

Enjoy your work and get more done by doing less!