b Self-Helpless: True Tales of a Working Girl: Last Call

8/05/2006

 

Last Call

It used to be my manager’s habit to call me 5 minutes before the end of the day… almost every single day… for 2 ½ years. Like clock-work, 5:55pm my phone would ring and she’d want the run-down on what was happening.

Let me also explain that every day I gave said manager an update no less than thirty minutes before the end of the day in order to prevent the daily “last call”. Not only that, but she got a report at the start of each day in addition to a separate daily status report. So what could possibly be so important at 5:55pm? Let me tell you: there was never anything that important that couldn’t wait.

My friends used to tell me not to answer the phone. What they didn’t get was that if I went that route, I’d get a speech about leaving 5 minutes early and how office hours were 9am-6pm blah, blah, blah. To me, it was just a plot to annoy me. Yeah well, it worked. It annoyed me because it usually kept me there for a long time past “office hours”.

A word of advice: If you find yourself in a situation where you continually check on an employee this much, ask yourself:

If yes, then ask yourself:

And finally, ask yourself:

I mean, I get it; giving up control can sometimes be difficult. However, needing to maintain that much control usually means there’s something deeper going on with YOU. By that I mean, you’re insecure about your own talents. The employee you question actually does have all the answers and if someone asks you something that only this person has the answers to and you are no help, then that would make you look… bad and probably worthless, right? Maybe, but maybe not.

Get on your game and off your employee’s backs. If they’re doing their jobs, listen to what they say so you don't have to ask them ridiculous questions that you should know the answers to and let them handle business. If they handle business that well, it’ll be a sign that you, as their manager, have lead them well.

So let it go and keep the last call for the bar!


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