One of the most important Principles of Creative Followership is – Do What Your Boss Does Not Like to Do.
There are other related Principles. Even though they are practical and effective when understood, I have found many employees are surprised when I explain them. Because the purpose and execution are so clear, simple and practical, the principles are enthusiastically received when explained.
Before I retired, when I was teaching supervision training classes to Chick-fil-A franchisee restaurant employees, I liked to ask this question:
“Do you work for a boss who does not like to do much?”
Usually, after a hesitant glance around the room, one of the employees would say, “Yes, I do.” Once the first person said yes, almost everyone in the class would boldly agree.
My next question always surprised the listeners. I would ask, “Do you realize how fortunate you are? Just think of the opportunity this leaves open for you.”
In most classes, someone would say, “How about me? My boss does not like to do anything!” I would tell him or her honestly, “Your opportunities are unlimited.”
I was not being ironic; it was a true statement. An inexperienced employee may not realize that a leader will leave a follower many opportunities to express him/herself. A worker will shirk the responsibility and wait for instructions. A Creative Follower, on the other hand, will grab the opportunity and run with it.
As a Creative Follower, when you do what the boss does not like to do and do it well, you add value. The more you do what the boss does not like to do the more valuable you become.
Your opportunities to get the prime assignments, excellent performance reviews and larger pay increases are greatly enhanced.
That is why you should be thankful for a do-nothing boss. The less the boss likes to do the greater your opportunities.
It amazes me when employees spend time complaining about a boss who does not work.
It is puzzling because what people usually mean is that the boss is not joining them in doing the kind of work the employees are paid to do. The boss must not duplicate the tasks assigned to the workers.
There are times when a good boss will step in to help employees at critical moments, but employees should realize that if a boss is duplicating the tasks the workers are doing, then the boss is neglecting the job the boss is being paid to do.
In this situation, a Creative Follower will help the boss get back to his or her management position and the responsibilities of that job.
Be Thankful for a Do-Nothing Boss
You have a great opportunity. Take advantage of it!