Monday, August 18, 2008

Managing Stress

How do you manage stress?

That was a question asked of me yesterday. It came from someone who understandably must deal with stress. The organization for which he is responsible employs over 1100 people.

He commented, "there is just so much that has to happen at just the right time that I don't know how to keep from worrying about it constantly!"

I asked him if he had competent people in the key positions. He replied that he did -- with the exception of a couple of spots. I then asked him if those couple of spots created most of his worries. He hesitated and then said, "well, yeah, probably."

That is the key -- and the difficulty -- in managing large organizations. Getting competent people in the key spots that you can trust to do their job well. Not perfect -- well.

I then asked if he had a good accountability structure for his organization. "Are your key people accountable for the job that they do? Is there a clear monitoring process and consequences for poor behavior?"

He said, "Yes, but...."

That little word "but" spoke volumes. It contained excuses, past failures, personality issues and myriad other reasons why those employees weren't truly accountable.

The result was worry.

Ultimately, worry is our own failure -- not the expectation of someone else failing. If we do our part well, what is there to worry about?

Many worry about things that are out of their control. That kind of worry is just wasted energy. We should plan, prepare and create backup plans to deal with those things we can't control. But, why worry? They are out of our control.

The only answer to that kind of worry is faith. Faith can be in many things -- but, if they are humans or man made things, they will fail. The only faith that can truly alleviate fear is faith in the eternal. If we place it all in God's hands and trust that He has our best interest in mind, what is there to worry about?


Anonymous said...

I know some people who will take care of his "bad spot personnel" for a reasonable price. ;-)

i beati said...

Faith is the ultimate answer-

Speaking of which Mc Cian rocked the forum the other night - did you watch ??decisive short assertive answers. The O stands for nada- W44-43 now we need a strong running mate- signs in my yard.

i beati said...

your comment about the angst ridden blogger was hilarity !!

Plowing and Sowing said...

great wisdom. much of the time we don't want to deal with the small battles, we then internalize which also leads to worry.

WomanHonorThyself said...

great insights and yes yes...we are not running the show my friend!

churchguy44 said...

Good Read. Too often we put ourselves in God's place instead of our own. Thanks for reminding folks about trust in the Creator not the creation,