Are you like me? I am very impatient. When I want something, I usually want it yesterday. My wife often makes fun of me when I get hungry because I can turn into someone else, someone unrecognizable. She loved when the Snickers® bar commercials came out with the actor Joe Pesci, who turned back into a young man when he ate a Snickers® bar.
Well, that can be me when I have gone about one minute too long without eating. I hope I never get lost without food. This is another reason why I don’t practice the long-recommended fast in my Christian faith. I don’t think God was talking about people like me when He said to fast. Personally, in my case, I think He was really saying, “Run fast and get some food!”
What about the waiting game when it comes to leadership? Do you make people wait on you for meetings or direction? I meet with hundreds of leaders each year. Some are like me…on time or even early for meetings. I am usually a 5- to 10-minute early kind of guy. But that is so I don’t miss a chance to eat.
I don’t know if it was wired in me, or if I was trained this way by my dad. Maybe it was my training in the Army, although I was pretty much always this way as I was growing up. I never want to be late.
I often think about this when I have scheduled meetings with leaders, and they are always late. I usually know who they are going to be after I have met with them a few times and see this is their pattern. My question is this, though: Do they do this to the people who are following their lead? Do they make others wait on them when those people have other obligations, too? What about this question: Do they expect others to be on time?
When we study the Law of the Picture from The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, we are taught that our people will follow what they see us doing in our leadership.
Things happen, and we are late sometimes – even I have been late once. But if this is an issue for you as a leader, I can pretty well guarantee your team is noticing. If being on time is not important to you, it surely will not be important to your team.
What does being late have to do with leadership? I believe everything. All the numbers leaders are concerned with will eventually be affected. Revenue, customer service, satisfaction, quality, and employee engagement are all negatively affected by a chronic example of late leadership.
Our employees begin to see a picture that appears to be a lack of caring and concern. Soon, they will begin to show up late in everything they perform.
Is this the picture you want to frame for your team? The next time you look at your schedule, ask yourself, “Can I be on time for all of these events, or do I need to reshuffle?”
If a coach could help you set new habits of productivity, then give me a call. I excel at promptness and have some good tips to share with all my fellow leaders.
Until then…Live Life Fully Ignited!!