Managing is not for sissies

by Shaun Kieran

Not everyone takes to managing. I’ve seen highly competent people, responsible for big projects involving huge dollar amounts, totally fall apart when called upon to deal with a “people” problem in the workplace.

Too often, they “handle” it by simply not handling it, letting it play out, then – when the situation has broken wide-open – overreacting abruptly and arbitrarily. And because they’re high enough on the food chain, or a strong producer themselves, (or the outright owner of the business) they can get away with it.

For most managers that’s simply not an option – things only get worse with that approach. Plus, most supervisors don’t have the luxury or the backing to simply rid themselves of a “human” problem.

I’ve had many painful experiences with managers who’ve become so caught up in human issues at work they become sleepless, anxious, indecisive, distracted, or even worse – depressed, frightened, hopeless, filled with rage and self-loathing.  I’m not overstating this in the least.

If, in addition, they have personal or family problems at home, or struggle with addiction, and haven’t learned much about themselves and their own way of being stressed, it can become a nightmare. There are many ways to get on top of one’s problems.  If there’s an EAP at work, it should be utilized.  And, yes, Coaching, too, is increasingly an option for managers and supervisors for all kinds of workplace problems, and might be just what’s needed.

Managing in the postmodern world is not for the faint-of-heart.

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