Monday, January 30, 2006

Please embarrass me!

I sometimes characterize myself as effective – I’m pretty good at getting things done – but not efficient – I am often in my office until 10:00 PM or later, finishing off my “to do” list. By the end of a long day, my work can get a bit sloppy as I am rushing to complete something and not checking it carefully.

Last Monday night, I was completing CTE’s weekly Management Group Agenda and the Agenda for the retreat we completed on Friday. About this time – near 10 PM - I was sending the documents out as an email attachment – or so I thought. But I failed to attach the retreat agenda, though completing it had been one of my priorities for the evening. I didn’t realize this until I checked with CTE's efficient and gifted Assistant Director on the morning of the retreat when we finally remedied the omission.

When I apologized for the oversight, one of my colleagues responded, “I thought there was something strange about your Monday message, but I didn’t want to embarrass you by raising the matter.

Happily we are well schooled in our retreat process and things went smoothly, despite my stumbling. But I was reminded of my “bad news” mantra:

Bad news is the news a leader most needs to know and, often, finds it hardest to get.

Don't hesitate to give me bad news.... please!


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