I recently read a post by Ed Batista on the Harvard Business Review blog, and it resonated with me. Mr. Batista says that many people make their mark in business and get noticed by being a doer – someone who works quickly and efficiently, and who gets stuff done. I’d agree with that. When you have an employee who is always reliable and who you know will do things, you notice it. They are often in the forefront of your mind when it is time for promotion.
I consider myself a doer. Now that I am in a leadership position, I struggle with delegation specifically because I am a doer. I want to do the work because the work is what made me excited about librarianship in the first place. I have to constantly remind myself that my co-workers want to do the work too! Those who are not yet in leadership positions need to be given opportunities to be noticed so that they can become leaders too.
As a leader, one of my roles is to inspire others to be doers. I make the resources available to them so that they can be successful. I encourage them to communicate and collaborate with each other so that everyone is more efficient. I try to encourage a big-picture view of the organization so that we don’t get too tunnel-visioned on our own departments and projects. I don’t want to be “Chief Doer” as Batista describes. The work I “do” now is now intended to set an example of my expectations.