The following newsletter is about a topic that caused me a tremendous amount of stress, long work hours, and employees that became all too dependent on me. That is until I learned a simple yet powerful management strategy that changed my life at work and at home.
It is a solution that in fact every manager/ executive/ parent (manager of a household) needs to know in order to feel more in control of their professional and personal lives. In fact it should become a personal policy for every executive.
This magical solution concerns the subject of problems. My job provides me the opportunity to meet and work with managers and top level executives in all types of businesses: large Fortune 500 companies, Public Entities, hospitals, small businesses, etc. and within many varied industries.
My observations are that managers/executives generally:
Have more to do than time allows. Go home most nights with things they perhaps should have done but didn't get to. Have too many incomplete projects at hand. Think too much about these incomplete tasks while not at work which makes one at times "not quite there" when around family and friends. Would like to find a way to feel more in control of their job. The solution then would be to have more time and fewer things to do!
Key Management Datum
A manager/executive's office is not a dumping ground for problems, contrary to how most companies run.
I see managers/executives overwhelmed with problems and as a result rarely get to perform the more fun aspects of their jobs such as creating better systems, implementing new initiatives, developing people, or even spending more time outside of their office walls.
The most efficient managers/executives have discovered that they usually have enough problems of their own; they don't need the added problems of their subordinates. People that report to you need to understand that it is never acceptable to present their problems for YOU to solve.
If you were asked to solve everyone's problems you would be overwhelmed, not have time for the important aspects of your job, and moreover, be doing your subordinate a disservice. Allow them the freedom to solve problems and to do their jobs and to grow as people by discovering their own ability to problem-solve.
When an employee presents me with a problem, I always ask that they also present their recommended solutions along with it. I often times agree on the solution and when I don't I let them know why and request a different solution.
If we can learn to delegate problem solving then our jobs are that much easier. Have you ever heard someone who works for you come into your office and say – "Joe, we have a problem" or "What should we do about this?" or "Such and such happened, what should I do?" They are attempts to get you to do their jobs. The best way to address this is by establishing a policy that there should never be a problem presented without a viable solution. Your employees will learn to take care of their own responsibilities; they will grow via this process and become more responsible and valuable to you and the company.
This also works wonderfully at home with your children. They of course may need more guidance but, as with your employees, steer them to a position of creating their own solutions. What does this have to do with reducing workers' comp costs?
We would all agree that the lowest common denominator of workers' comp costs is the injury itself.
Then it can be concluded that if injuries were preventable we could control workers' comp costs and the attendant production problems, right?
How can the workers' comp executive prevent the nurse on the 4th floor from hurting her shoulder?
How can the Director of Safety prevent the truck driver 2,000 miles away from hurting his back?
How can a Warehouse Manager prevent a back injury to one of 200 employees in the warehouse?
How can the Human Resources Manager prevent a data entry employee from getting an ergonomic injury in a company of 4,000 employees?
How can a Workers' Comp Executive or Operational Manager prevent any injury to any of the perhaps hundreds or thousands of employees that work for the company?
DELEGATE THE PROBLEM!
F.I.T. will help each employee to become capable of being responsible for their own health! Your employees are highly motivated to avert pain. It is part of everyone's makeup! Your employees will instinctively problem solve if provided the correct information. Bionomics™ is a teaching methodology that we have discovered that breaks through employees' barriers to learning and gets them to willingly apply our Backsafe® or Sittingsafe® injury prevention techniques for their own well-being.
It is fantastic process to watch. Over the years we have heard Operation Managers try to reason away why back and shoulder injuries continue: "My employees are different, I just don't see them changing. They just won't listen!"
They may be different, but if taught properly they will listen and change their behavior. Our success is proven after working with over 1 million people in many job descriptions and environments. Injuries stop happening and stay suspended!
Dramatic reductions of sprain/strain injuries occur regularly. Truck and bus drivers for example, hundreds and thousands of miles from their company offices, are making and applying Backsafe techniques because it helps THEM personally! They were educated properly on how to prevent insidious micro-trauma and became part of the corporate solution to lower workers' comp costs.
So, start delegating problems and enjoy your new life! An effective manager doesn't solve people's problems. They teach others to solve their own. And when it comes to life-changing injuries, what a gift it is to help others to know how to prevent them!
Prevent tomorrow's injuries today!™
Dennis Downing, President
Future Industrial Technologies
*This article may be reprinted in its entirety provided that the following resource is left intact:
Future Industrial Technologies, Inc. (F.I.T.) offers workplace safety and ergonomics training programs. Backsafe® teaches employees how to perform their specific job tasks in a manner that is biomechanically correct. Sittingsafe® teaches office employees how to adapt their existing workstations so they are ergonomically correct. These injury prevention programs make your workplace safer and are proven to reduce injuries and worker compensation insurance costs.
For more information contact Dennis Downing at:
Future Industrial Technologies, Inc.
5951 Encina Road, Suite 201 | Goleta, CA 93117
Tel (800) 775-2225 | Fax (805) 967-2487
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | Website: http://www.backsafe.com