Full disclosure: I guilty of driving in the wrong lane as a leader. (Mostly before I learned better.)
What does "driving in the wrong lane" look like? WrongLaners most often jump into action upon hearing of a problem. Of course, problems and bad news have an insidious way appearing at our doorstep (or inbox).
BEFORE we leap into action, we are wise to enact the following recipe:
- Identify the folks on the team closest to the problem and ask some clarifying questions. It is highly likely they're "already on it."
- If not, make sure you're all on the same page about "the problem," and assign the folks closest to it the task of running point on the solution crafting.
- Provide the resources, support, and "cover" for those teammates to work on the corrective action.
- Flag our calendar for regular follow-up and monitoring.
- Get out of their way as they untangle the skein.
- Heap praise on the Team when the issue is resolved (which it usually is).