Today I had an extremely busy day in work, with pressures and deadlines set from both my own senior management but also from within senior management of our client. Amongst the multiple requests there were a number of meetings and conference calls to discuss ongoing issues within our contract, and being the manager of a team vital to the campaign I had to attend all.
I have had a number of days like this over the last month or so, and have learned a few key lessons so far.
1. Don’t get over-wellmed – We are all human. Everyone whether it is the new recruit or the company director, all have that one thing in common. Everyone has their limits, and we can only do what we can do. If you are handed more tasks than can be completed in any given timeframe, prioritise ! – you will soon realise that the people making requests have also had request from those that they report to. They are all prioritising and attempting to meet unreachable deadlines. If you pick the correct things to prioritise, everything will work out fine.
2. Delegate – If you are in a position where you have a team or other that report to you, utilise their skills. Learn who you can trust for certain tasks and delegate to them. If the tasks you are giving them contribute to something requested by someone more senior, promote it as an opportunity. Tip – always ensure the people you choose for tasks get the recognition they deserve, name drop them, CC them in that final email and make sure they feel the benefits of picking up your requests.
3. Don’t fear the hierarchy, but be prepared – In attending conference calls and meeting with senior member of a business, in which large business decisions are made, it can be a fairly nervous time if new to the game. Remember, you attending these meeting etc for a reason. You have something to contribute. Be prepared and don’t be afraid to speak and make yourself known. It is a common mistake to over complicate and fear you will get confused or be over powered by others. When you actually attend you will find nothing is as complicated as you feared and usually, everyone is their for a common purpose.
4. Know your strengths – As well as being prepared, always think before you respond or speak up. Remember exactly what other view as your strengths and when this is the topic of discussion, speak up.
5. Prepare support but know limitations – when putting forward proposal, know the strengths and have firm evidence to support. ALWAYS ensure you have studied the limitations and acknowledge the concerns you have considered before making your proposal. If you are on the ball, making small additional proposals in how to overcome those limitations.
6. Don’t over complicate – start with your instincts, don’t over complicate an issue that you have already resolved. Usually the first resolution is the right one.
7. Link – try and link current ideas to previous discussions. Acknowledge previous discussion in current ones, and when putting forward a proposal, use previous discussions to support. This will show that you have paid attention, have an attention to detail and get others on your side.
More to follow ….