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by Martin Kennedy
As managers and leaders we often feel we need to solve our team members' problems but sometimes we have to just listen and sit on our hands.
How often has an employee come to you with a problem and, demonstrating your own competence, you think one of the following:
1. She should know that by now.
2. Don't ask me, I don't know.
3. OK, I'll tell you because it is quicker than having you come up with the solution.
If we are to grow our employees into future leaders we need to encourage them to solve problems. You can listen and guide their thinking. Suggest they come back to you in a few hours or tomorrow with the issue written up as a one page brief with a list of three possible solutions.
Chances are that by the time they come back to you to discuss the issue they have come up with some great answers or at least have put everything into perspective, giving you a much better starting point for a conversation.
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