Leaders who try to get everyone on the same page do more harm than good for your company

2 min read

Managers and leaders often talk about “getting everyone on the same page”. While they think that in is more productive if everyone works in the same way, the opposite is true. The real reason managers and whole companies try to get everybody on the same page is because they are weak and afraid. They think that molding everyone into a set of company values and processes will create a unified army of workers. This way of thinking is advocated by many managers. They believe that people will work better when they are more alike.

By trying to make every think and work alike, you weaken the differences between people. And very often, the differences between people lead to great results. By decreasing differences between people, you also kill creativity and natural flow. The feeling that you have to work in a described way by your manager, makes most of us less motivated.

So the real danger is that when you try to turn people into something they are not, they bring less energy and motivation to the task. Initially people might be enthusiastic about a new direction. You see this effect often with new managers, they believe that their strategy is working. Which is true, but it will not last.

Instead of molding people into something you want them to be, relax and open up to people’s unique visions. As a leader, you can offer your people a framework so they can do their job. For instance, Steve Jobs wasn’t afraid to let Jony Ive flourish. Jobs knew better, he had fallen to the tyranny of fearful management by John Sculley. Not able to keep Jobs in check, Sculley made sure Jobs was fired.

Everyone has to be a leader sooner or later. Think of small projects you might have to lead with a handful of people That is enough to demonstrate your leadership. By not being afraid of people’s capabilities and talents, you can let them excel in what they do. This will ultimately lead to better results.

 

 

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Why competition is bad

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In ancient times, the rules of nature were easy. If you didn’t compete for food, shelter or women, you would die. We still compete for those things, but the competition actually makes us weaker.

When we compete, two negative things can happen.

  1. We start imitating the competition
  2. We focus too much on our competitor, instead of our business

In our personal lives, we often imitate our competitors. We all compete on some level with colleagues, friends, and family. This will make you lose your identity and dignity. True power comes from within. Don’t compete with others. You don’t have to have a better car.

You can also apply this to business. When Microsoft and Google were focussing on each other, Apple became the biggest tech company in the world.

Competition is bad. Focus on the value that you add, not on how much better you are compared to someone else.

“Your competition is not other people but the time you kill, the ill will you create, the knowledge you neglect to learn, the connections you fail to build, the health you sacrifice along the path, your inability to generate ideas, the people around you who don’t support and love your efforts, and whatever god you curse for your bad luck.”
– James Altucher

 

 

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