159 – June 8
“Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you.”—Carl Sandburg
Sometimes, something goes wrong with delegating. The person you hired to delegate to starts delegating to you instead. Let me tell you about Jimmy. Jimmy was a handsome, energetic, young man I hired as a full-charge bookkeeper at my business management company. He was terrific, with one exception: He could never remember where files were. He got into the habit of coming into my office and complaining he couldn’t find a particular file. I have a good memory for things like that, so I got into the habit of jumping up and finding it for him.
It wasn’t long before I realized I was working for my employee instead of vice versa. Every time he needed something, he asked me for it and I ran and got it. It reminded me of all the years I had worked as a secretary. But something was wrong with this picture—I was the boss!
I realized that I was going to have to spend the time to train Jimmy how to look for files. This would take more time initially, but eventually I would be freed from this task if he could find files on his own. So the next time he told me he couldn’t find the file, I asked him to sit down in my office.
“Where have you looked?” I asked him. He looked at me wide-eyed. He was certainly surprised by my question. I don’t think he had actually looked anywhere yet, but he named a particular section of the file cabinet.
“Okay,” I said, “And where else do you think it could be?” Now he was a trifle annoyed, but named another place. I told him to go look there and come back to me if it wasn’t there and we’d think about other places it might be. Somewhat ruffled, Jimmy left on his search.
He came back once to report he still couldn’t find it, and we brainstormed some other ideas. He got the message that I wasn’t getting out of my chair to go look for it for him. We went through this routine a couple of times more before he stopped coming to ask where files were. By then, he knew the process.
Think this is something you might try with your employees? Or your children?
“I love to delegate to others so I can do the work I love!”
A friend posted this note on Facebook and it cracked me up!
BREAKING NEWS: The Pity Train has just derailed at the intersection of Suck It Up & Move On, and crashed into We All Have Problems, before coming to a complete stop at Get the Hell Over It. Any complaints about how we operate can be forwarded to 1-800-waa-waaa. This is Dr. Sniffle Reporting LIVE from Quitchur Bitchin’. If you like this, repost it. If you don’t…suck it up cupcake! Life doesn’t revolve around you!!
Wally Boag and Betty Taylor did over 40,000 performances of the Golden Horseshoe Review in Frontierland at Disneyland. They both passed away a year ago within a day of each other. I know they’ve gone to that big theatre in the sky where they will be making the angels laugh.
Back in my acting days, I had the privilege of performing with Wally in a Winnie the Pooh for President rally on Main Street. He played the Mad Hatter and I played Cruella DeVille. He was a doll and an absolute pro. When we were rehearsing, I had an entrance where I walked down the stairs and he swept off his top hat and bowed. I paused next to him with my long cigarette holder, then looked at the hat and used it as an ashtray. He fell apart laughing! I’ll always treasure that – I made Wally Boag laugh!
What fun memories.