Momentum Podcast: 359
Insecurities On Your Team Will Overwhelm You
by Alex Charfen
If your team doesn't feel safe, they will overwhelm you with questions about every aspect of their job. When they have clear outcomes and they know what your expectations are they will go and execute those tasks. Do you really think your team wants to overwhelm you and spend their time and energy asking you for clarity? No. Your team wants to win and when they feel safe they will!
Full Audio Transcript
Alex Charfen: If you are a CEO, an entrepreneur, whose building a team, or if you already have a team, you have to understand something about the team dynamic. If your team is insecure, you are going to be overwhelmed.
I'm Alex Charfen, and this is the Momentum podcast. Made for empire builders, game changers, trail blazers, shock takers, record breakers, world makers, and creators of all kinds. Those among us who can't turn it off and don't know why anyone would want to. We challenge complacency, destroy apathy, and we are obsessed with creating momentum, so we can roll over bureaucracy and make our greatest contribution.
Sure, we pay attention to their rules, but only so that we can bend them, break them, then rewrite them around our own will. We don't accept our destiny, we define it. We don't understand defeat, because you only lose if you stop and we don't know how. While the rest of the world strives for average and clings desperately to the status quo, we're the minority. The few, who are willing to hallucinate there could be a better future, and instead of just daydreaming of what could do, we endure the vulnerability and exposure it takes to make it real. We are the evolutionary hunters, clearly the most important people in the world because entrepreneurs are the only source of consistent, positive human evolution and we always will be.
I hear it all the time from entrepreneurs who are building teams or who have teams. They say, “Alex, I'm overwhelmed. I'm overwhelmed with how often my teams asks questions. I'm overwhelmed with all the got a minute. I'm overwhelmed with how much help they need from me in order to just do their jobs.” For me, there's a simple scenario. When a team is overwhelming the CEO with got a minutes, with questions, with details, what that normally means is this: the team doesn't feel safe. They don't feel safe to go and get things done. They don't feel safe that they have clarity around what they should be doing. Because they don't have clarity, they don't have the ... They're not going to make the commitment, they're not going to feel confident, so they will overwhelm you. If you have a team right now, and you find yourself getting asked questions all the time and people wanting details from you, and not knowing how to move forward and asking you how to, and constantly asking you for your time, asking you for your attention, chances are your team doesn't feel safe.
When your team doesn't feel safe, they won't take risks. And when your team really doesn't feel safe, if they don't have clear outcomes, they don't know where you're going, they don't know what it really expected of them, they're going to ask you about every move they make. And here's the issue. As CEOs, when our team is asking us about every move they make, we get frustrated with the team. We think, “Why can't they just get things done? Why can't they just go do it? Why can't they just move forward on their own?” And with very few exceptions, if you're in a place where your team is asking you, for each move they're asking you to clarify everything for them, here's the issue that you have. They don't have clear outcomes. They don't know what you really expect, and they don't have enough information to go out and achieve on their own.
This is something that I relearn all the time as a CEO. I always know which project is unclear in our company because it's the project that feels overwhelming to me. It's the one where my team is asking me too many questions. Where they're constantly trying to get more information from me. Where they're asking for details, and the reason is, they don't feel safe. Here's what happens. When your team feels safe, when your team has clear outcomes, when they know what your expectations are, they will just go execute. Do you really think your team wants to be asking you questions over and over again? Do you really think that they want to be overwhelming you and spending their time, their effort, their energy, in asking you for clarity? No. When a team has clarity, they'll just go execute. Your team is like every other team on the world, they want ... In the world. They want to succeed. They want to win. They want to do well. When they feel safe, they will take risks.
On the other side of that coin, if your team lacks clarity, if they don't know their roles, if they don't know where they're going, if they don't have clear outcomes, if there's not clear measurement in place letting them know if they're successful, if they don't know what they're accountable to, what each person's accountability is, they will constantly ask you questions. It will feel like they're checking in with you at every step of the way. It's like transactional management in reverse. Transactional management is when you tell people what to do, check that it got done, and tell them what to do again. It is the most exhausting type of management, because you're literally telling people what to do. Checking that it got done, telling them what to do. Checking it got done. Telling them what to do. And it's exhausting.
Now, if you have a big enough team, and you don't have clear outcomes, your team doesn't feel safe, they're not confident, here's what will happen. They'll check with you what to do, and then they'll go get it done. Then they'll check with you what to do, and then they'll go get it done. They'll check with you what to do, they'll go get it done. And here's the issue, we blame our team when what we really should be doing is examining the process and the project, or what they're working on and asking ourselves, “Do they really have clarity?” Because here's what happens. When we blame the team, we go rocketing backwards. Because if your team is actually checking with you to make sure they're doing the right things, if they're continuously verifying with you that they're moving in the right direction, what you really have is a team whose highly conscientious, and doing the right thing.
If you give a team like that clarity, if you give them marching orders, if you give them clear accountability to what the outcomes are, what their roles are, and what you're measuring to see if you're successful, everything in your business will change and things will start moving forward fast, because a team that is willing to check with you, and is willing to put in that energy, and is willing to put in that time, what you're probably dealing with is people who really want to win. And if they don't have clarity they're not going to take a step in the wrong direction. The way that you fix this, the way you get yourself out of overwhelm, is to give everyone on your team clear outcomes. Let them know exactly what you want in as much detail as you can, so that they know what they're aiming at. Then, make sure each person understands their individual role, so that they know what role they play, and they know what they have to do. And then, make sure they know what you're measuring to know if you're successful.
I've been doing this for over 20 years, and this still happens on my team. In fact, it's happened in the past couple days with one of our projects, where the team didn't have clarity and all of a sudden I was getting way too many questions, and way too many inquiries from several different people. And my first thought was, “What is going on? What's wrong here?” And I quickly pivoted to, “This is me. If I'm overwhelmed, it means my team doesn't feel safe. They don't know where we're going, and they don't have ultimate clarity.” If you're managing people, you should think the same way. If your team is overwhelming you right now, the reason probably is, that they don't have clarity and they don't know where they're going, and they're trying to do the right thing.
Far too often, CEOs, entrepreneurs with teams, blame the team when this happens. When we take responsibility and we give those three precious things to a team, clear outcomes, clear accountability for each person's role, and what you're measuring to be successful, you will find your team going forward fast. And if they've been overwhelming you with questions so far, that means that you have a conscientious team that refuses to miss and make a mistake. Give them what they need. Give them clear outcomes, clear accountability, and what you're measuring to be successful, and you will see everything in your company shift. Your projects will start getting done faster, and you're going to move forward and achieve what you want to achieve. If your team is overwhelming you, take responsibility, change it, and you will see yourself move forward fast.
If you're an entrepreneur whose ready to build a team, or if you have a team that you're ready to expand, and you have an opportunity, greater than you could take advantage of by yourself, then reach out to us. Go to billionairecode.com/apply. Fill out the simple application there, in fact, the application will probably teach you more about your business than just about anything else you'll do today. Answer the application and once you're approved, my team will set up a call with you so that we can show you exactly how we're helping entrepreneurs around the world build game changing teams, create massive outcomes, and create more momentum than they ever thought possible. Billionairecode.com/apply.