There’s a phrase that’s been coined lately called “Helicopter Parenting”. It describes parents who hover over their children in an attempt to protect them from any conceivable harm, physical or emotional.
Because we live in a wealthy society we can lavish our care and attention on our children in a way never before possible. As with many other things, what started out as a good intent we later discover has its negative effects.
We can protect our children to such an extent that when they have to go out into the real world on their own they don’t have enough resilience and they’re likely to fall in a heap at the very first hurdle.
My question for you in a business sense is; Are you helicopter managing your business?
Do you hover over your business and any staff you have in order to protect it? At the risk of weakening it in tough times.
Give your staff the sense that you trust them and it allows them room to grow. Micro manage them and they’ll never take a chance or make a decision for themselves. If you find it hard to find staff that are able to make decisions for themselves, it maybe you don’t give them enough room and they don’t feel you’ll support them when they do make a decision.
Make it clear what your expectations are, let them know how you make decisions, what your priorities are, what you would expect them to do. Make all this clear BEFORE you expect them to make their own decisions.
Once you’ve established how you would make your decisions, you must encourage and support genuine attempts to be decisive even if you don’t agree with the decisions they made. Congratulate them first on showing initiative and only then explain how you may have handled things differently.
Part of the process is allowing mistakes to happen. Hard as that is, think about it, how did you learn? From your mistakes right? Staff need to feel free to also make mistakes or they will shut down and never try.
You will be forever having to make all the decisions and manage everything yourself if you don’t allow them to develop their confidence in a safe supportive environment.