Effective Leaders Pick Up the Phone

You will need a piece of paper or a Post-It note for this blog. On that paper, write down an answer to one of these questions:

  1. What is your most troubling current issue?
  2. What is one task on your list you keep putting off because you are unsure of how to proceed?
  3. What is one decision you still have to make this week?

Now, put the piece of paper aside and continue reading.

Many of us drag our feet because of uncertainty. That’s normal.

Because we’re leaders, we might fall into the trap of feeling like we need to have all the answers. Additionally, we need to have the answers ourselves, so we don’t ask for help. That’s also normal.

But remember: leaders are not leading alone.

So, pick up the phone.

You have friends, colleagues, and mentors who can help. In fact, they want to help.

In the first few years of my previous career, I rarely asked for advice or feedback.
After I had 15 years under my belt, I started to run decisions by at least three colleagues.

Guess when I was more effective?

Now, remember that piece of paper? Get it. Look at your answer to one of the questions above. Who can you call about it right now, in this very moment? Do it. Make the call. I’ll wait.

Now, how did it go? Did you get some clarity? Direction? Answers?

Asking for help when you’re stuck seems obvious, but there are a lot of leaders who believe they’ve got to go it alone. If you know someone like this, remind them that it’s okay to pick up the phone and make a call. Ask for advice or a sounding board or a challenge to your thinking.

Picking up the phone can increase your effectiveness and reduce your stress. What if you did it more often?

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