Sometimes the perspective of an outsider who has no political skin in the game is valuable. That fresh look from an experienced professional—The Corporate Nanny’s™ stock-in-trade—can get you to the bottom of what seemed an impossible problem. More than that, The Corporate Nanny will not be a drop-in fixer, but will build your skills to handle the next problem on your own with confidence and the likelihood of a good outcome.
Here’s an example:
Jim, director of a busy nonprofit, had three administrative secretaries. Two, Jan and Marie, had been with him for years. Tricia was a new-hire, brought in during a busy period when there was no time for a proper orientation.
The three secretaries liked each other, but no one had time to teach Tricia the ropes. She had to learn on the fly and there were gaps in her knowledge. Jan and Marie helped her out when they could, but they had their own jobs and were busy enough.
Over time, Jan and Marie became frustrated when Tricia wasn’t measuring up. When the friction came to Jim’s attention—he was a busy guy and didn’t really notice until Jan and Marie asked for meeting—he told the three to be adults and work it out.
Eventually, Tricia made a significant mistake that was costly to the nonprofit. Jim lost his temper in a really memorable outburst. Tricia left the office in tears. The tension in the office meant the work wasn’t being done well and morale was at a low ebb.
So What Happened?
The Corporate Nanny Tip: Other than providing Tricia with the orientation she should have had, Jim wanted to know how he could better deal with office conflicts. Jim learned that he’s a classic Steamroller. It’s all about competence for the Steamroller. Steamrollers forge ahead, often unaware of the turbulence they leave in their wake. If ever you hear yourself saying in response to a problem that lands in your lap, “Just work it out!” know you’re headed down a slippery slope. You probably don’t have all the facts. Stop. Listen. Get the facts. Assess. You’ll contribute to a solution, not make the problem bigger.