Waiting on leadership to show up and take action can be one of the most frustrating issues in corporate America. More frustrating than a bad tyrant of a boss is the absent boss. At least with that tyrant, you might learn what to expect. When absent and you are waiting – you often spend your days in frustration not knowing what matters and what should be let go.
In episode 156, I dealt with how you can lead if you have a leadership void. The reason for that podcast was because I find myself with so many clients who find themselves leaderless. My first take when leaderless is to find a way to step up and lead – if even on the small things.
But unfortunately, that does not always work. Sometimes a lack of a leader just leaves you frustrated.
Lack of Leadership
Here is the situation. You have a job to do, but nothing clear about what matters. No one is calling the shots. You have asked the person who is filling the role (often in a temporary role) and get nothing. You are being told by management that things will change soon. They will fill the slot, hire new people, move things around, etc soon. But as you wait for change, you become frustrated and restless.
But I have found that this is sometimes not even possible. So what do you do?
- What must be done? You know the drill, you know the things that have to get done. Make sure they get done.
- Find ways to contribute during the leadership void. Look around and ask other team members how you can help. Do what you can do.
- Look for new opportunities inside the organization. Use the reverse interview to connect and learn from others.
- Look outside. After all, the leadership void is brought on by poor leadership overall. Be willing to look outside. Doing some reverse interviews just for the fun of it can really open up the doors. Again, use the reverse interview to connect and learn from others.
- Set a deadline. What is your drop-dead point for putting up with this? Are you willing to coast and do little to nothing? Or are you going to give it six months to work out before you leave?
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