Today the sales team was packing shoes and apparel for the big upcoming trade show in Panama. I noticed they needed a hand and I started assisting in what I could. Working in marketing and strategic planning, I felt the team needed the assistance, not so much for the real manual help (I was more of a liability than an asset when it comes to packing shoes…) Rather, I thought they needed the presence of a Director, since the Sales Director was anywhere to be found. And not a Director to give orders, but one to humbly be quiet and help pack. It sends a strong message to the masses: that management cares and that sometimes sharing the work helps everyone integrate and feel better.
And I admit, I hate packing and there was probably an equally – but not better – use of my time. This is a disciplined, self-directed team. Yet, why do some managers/directors/whatever lose sight of their team like this? Being proud about managing a discipline, self-directed team is something to be reckoned with. Being a creep who dismisses people and petty task and loses sight of the team is not.