How’s Your Balance? Professional Journey Steps: step #21

How’s Your Balance? Professional Journey Steps: step #21

Balance scale

Balance is synonymous with life in general. Nature has its own incredible balancing ability – which humans seem bound and determined to mess with. Work life balance has garnered much attention in the last couple of decades and we continue to struggle with that proper balance. But within our work environments there is also a need for balance.

I’ve had an old balance scale as an ornament in my office for almost 25 years. It sits proudly on my desk and has been the subject of many a query from visitors. To me it has always represented the fact there are very few slam-dunk, black and white, clean cut decisions, almost all have ‘grey’ areas. Each decision has to be weighed out on its merits, its pros and cons and then decided – to obtain a ‘balanced’ result. This fact and scenario becomes more common as you move up the hierarchy. Compounding this challenge, there usually remain valid points on the non-selected side (choices), but we have to make the best decision possible.

In the last 10-15 years the scale has taken on an additional representation, it is a physical metaphor and reminder to keep management and leadership in the correct balance within the organisation. As stated in a previous article, there are distinct differences between management & leadership[1] and both are essentially important for an organisation to thrive and reach ultimate success. We have to ensure each is developed and properly balanced.

This developing and balancing is not easy because it will change with the make-up of your organisation over time as well as with the many and constant changes organisations face internally and externally – hence the scale… to remind us to check the balance. Most organisations are challenged with this all-important balancing exercise.

This week’s Professional Journey Step guidance is:

To remind you to check the balance of emphasis between management focus / skills and leadership focus / skills within your organisation. It will make the difference between a productive, harmonious and profitable environment which is carrying you toward your vision and goals versus one of frustration, diminished productivity, profit and non-collaborative infighting where lack of trust and disengagement live and grow.

How do you check this balance you may ask? It isn’t quite as simple as checking the fuel gauge or dipstick in your car to ensure you have the right amount of petrol or oil but it needs to be checked to ensure your organisation doesn’t ‘break down’. It starts with having a very good understanding and appreciation for the differences between the two skills and assessing how well developed each is and how they each affect the environment within your organisation. From there it is a matter of constantly monitoring and working to ensure neither gets an imbalanced attention, emphasis or investment.

One final tip, when you discover there is an improper balance, Take Action. Acknowledging an imbalance without action will only exacerbate the problem and cause you way more frustration and loss than anyone wants.

If you could benefit form some assistance in checking your balance or improving it overall, please contact us; we exist to help you. Thank you,

Enjoy the journey

[1] (see https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/management-versus-leadership-do-you-really-know-michael-bryden?trk=mp-reader-card)