CXO

How to Let Go the Hard Way

I hate falling

sick. I hate being sick. I hate going to work, realizing I need to

spend quality time with my bathroom, and coming home. I hate

dropping all of my work off onto my team...

...oh, wait. My

primary work supposedly revolves around assisting my team in

organizing their time. Doesn't it? Or have I fallen into that old

trap of trying to do too much as an “individual contributor”,

proving my worth by doing rather than helping.

It's hard to tell

when you are on the right path. As a rule I try to pass tasks from

me to my team; I act kind of like a task collector, moving though the

environment and pilling up work, which I then hand off to more

capable people to accomplish. When a task comes up suddenly,

especially a busywork task I don't want disrupting my team's work, I

take it on my own plate and get it done as fast as possible.

Today, for

example, I meandered into work early to help with some reboots. I

don't like asking my team to come in before 6AM as a rule and I

thought I would be at my desk most of the day, baring meetings.

Besides, I may be rusty but I can handle remote rebooting an NT

server. Shutdown.exe is an old and dear friend.

Should I have

given that task to, say, the department on-call person? Probably.

He is paid to come in to deal with that kind of thing. But the

servers were my responsibility. I wanted to get some planning work

done before the day started. Yada. Yada. Yada....there's always a

reason, always a noble intent behind taking on more activity rather

than doing my work.

Being sick

actually helped me. It forced me to let go of a lot of excess tasks

I horded up. My team can handle them, mostly better than I can, so

long as I define them properly. Doing just that took most of the

morning. Apparently I horded a bit more work than I thought I had.

Now they've

dispersed, though, and I might actually be able to do my job of

planning and assessing the operational and project needs of my team's

lines of service. After I get back from spending more quality time

in the bathroom.

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