Whose shoes are you wearing?
Wednesday, August 10, 2016 - Joe Kiedinger
My colleague’s advice to me began with an odd question, “Whose shoes are you walking in?” That questions certainly threw me for a loop.
“What do you mean?” I replied.
“Are you first an inventor or are you first a sales person?” he asked.
“I’m an inventor who needs to promote and sell,” I replied.
“Stop selling and send another person who wears selling shoes. Keep inventing because there is so much more inside of you. Get out of your own way, selling is not your strength. Leading and inventing are the shoes you’re wearing,” was his advice for me.
Wow! What a thoughtful thing for him to say. That took courage and a lot of love to share that kind of candor. I now stick to what I’m born for and I now delegate to someone who is wearing the right shoes. Let me tell you, I feel alive! My stress level has gone down and I am more in control of my life and company than I’ve ever been before.
So now I ask you, “Are you wearing the right shoes?” Build your bench not only based on skill, but motivation and desire. You may have employees you need to shift to another seat because those are the shoes they are wearing. Set employees up for success by allowing them to expand their job roles that best fit their shoes.
If they don’t have the right shoes for the job required, let them go so they can find the right fit. Life is short, set them free. They may not like you in the moment, but they’ll love you once they’ve discovered a true fit!
ACTION PLAN: What action will you take to help employees find their right fit?