Meir Ezra
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What Executives Fear

Previous parts of this article: Part 1   

After winning the revolution against , Bolivar took over and tried to do everything himself. He felt he had to be in charge of everything and make all the decisions.

For example, after the war, some of the richest gold, silver and copper mines in the world were abandoned by the Spanish owners. Bolivar did not allow anyone to take over these mines, even though his officers and troops were sitting around with nothing to do.

He did not assign anyone to take over the justice system, the education system, the roads or the cities. He was afraid that new powerful leaders would hurt the country.

The same thing happens in governments, businesses and groups today.

For example, John has ten smart employees, but he makes all the decisions and does all the important work himself. His staff watch him work very hard. They are not allowed to make decisions, so they wait for John to tell them what to do. His company does not grow and John starts to burn out.

Finally, he gets enough courage to give some authority to his best employee, Jill. "You are now in charge of the all of the work schedules. Sort out the shifts and vacations."

Jill is happy to take over and posts a new schedule . . . but John gets scared. He worries she will upset the other secretaries. He feels anxiety about her new schedule.

If John is a stupid executive, he will change the schedule. If John is a smart executive, he will leave the schedule alone.

John succeeds as an executive when he delegates entire jobs and lets his people get on with it. He gives staff members room to make mistakes, fix their mistakes and learn from their mistakes. He supports them and leaves them alone.


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