Day 13 – 12:21 a.m. – I just finished eating a late dinner after a long day of work (both at Prosper and with Highlight Sports at the Dance America Nationals).
I anticipated today being a lot harder than it actually turned out to be. I had to let go of an employee who’s in our ward, which I thought would be a heated debate, but he was very professional, understanding, and left on good terms. Then, after that, I was asked to "transfer" a coach to the resource team, a coach that has been with us for quite some time. This was even a more challenging thing but he took it well too.
I’ve been really blessed to have the experiences I’m having in business and life. Here are a few things I’ve learned throughout the process:
- You don’t always have to know all the answers. One of the biggest mistakes I’ve made to date with an employee is trying to answer their questions on the fly, in front of others, and end up getting upset about their response. Not only is this letting my emotions get the best of me, but it’s also never a good way to show leadership. Instead, I should simply state, "I’d be happy to talk to you about that one on one" or "I don’t know the answer to that question, I’ll look in to it and get back to you…" Being a know-it-all never pays off.
- Get to know your employees. Ask them questions, get their personal feedback, treat them the way you’d like to be treated. I feel one of the best meetings we’ve had has been when I open things up to discuss how things are going, let them ask questions, and just LISTEN. I feel they can tell I really do care about their opinions and feelings and that I want the best for them. Empathy towards employees has much longer effects on performance.
- Don’t take myself to serious. I take things really serious and can often times be a bit too candid with people. I feel "honesty is the best policy" but at times I can filter and talk about things when the emotions are quite so tight.
I’m grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ that gives me guidance, direction and peace, even in tough times. I feel like the small, subtle prayers I said this morning on the way to work helped me be calm and collected as I was forced to have some difficult discussions.