I have this fantasy. It’s about a guy who’s a boss. He’s
getting ready for the day, shaving and looking at himself in the mirror. He says
to himself: “I’m going to be the worst boss on the planet today, and have a
great time doing it!”
His self-talk goes on, revving him up for the day. “I’m going to make
completely arbitrary decisions and then reverse myself. I’ll treat people
unfairly and when they complain I’ll tell them that whiners never succeed with
me. Negativity and correction are my tools of choice.”
Nobody actually does that. Nobody starts out to be a lousy boss. But there
are lousy bosses out there. You might be one of them. Here’s some self-talk you
might try if you’d rather be a great boss. It uses the “just for today”
Just for today I’m going help every person on my team make a little progress
Just for today I’m going to ignore my tendency to criticize first and praise
people for doing things that I want them to do more of.
Just for today I’m going to make an extra effort to make sure that team
members understand my expectations. Then I’m going to follow up to make sure
that understanding turns into performance.
Just for today, I’m going to overcome my fear and talk to people about
performance issues. I’ll describe the situation without adjectives, outline the
consequences and then wait for them to speak so we can have a real conversation
about what should be done.
Just for today, I’m going to make a special effort to help everyone succeed.
That means my boss and my team members and the team itself.
Boss’s Bottom Line
There are great bosses out there doing this every day. Just for today, you
can do it too.