A Manager Tells, A Leader Asks

I’ve had some great bosses, some good bosses and some really poor bosses in my career. The great bosses really inspired me to do more, they nurtured my interests and creativity guiding me to find tasks and projects which benefitted the organization as well as my personal interests to learn and grow. The good bosses made sure I was doing my job and pretty much stayed out of my way. The poor bosses actually hampered me from doing my job by forcing me to do things their way, which was typically contrary to the way I was doing it or felt like it should be done.

One of my great bosses gave me a phrase which I use to this day;

“Good bosses clear roadblocks so their staff can get their jobs done”.

This phrase along with my experience dealing with bad bosses has led me to developing this philosophy.

Just the act of telling someone something implies that the teller is confident in their response and, in many cases, is not open to questioning or changing their response. When a person asks in my mind it implies that the teller is open to other’s ideas. I firmly believe that latter is a better way to be.