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R E TA ILER R E B E L

Be a Team Player By Gabriel O’Brien

Empowering people on your staff to manage aspects of your business allows you to focus on what you need to focus on, and it gives your staff something to make their own and be invested in.

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I’m not, by nature, a team person. I have five brothers and sisters, and we had one bathroom growing up, which may have scarred me when it comes to playing nice with others. I ran cross country, which is technically a team sport, although everyone runs their own race. Today, much of the content work I do is at times solitary, in that I often am writing blogs or making videos without any kind of team around me. All this is not to say that I don’t like working with others — just that the circumstances and budgets I’m often working with don’t afford larger crews. When I have the opportunity to work with a larger crew, I love it. It’s easy to believe that more voices will lead to more confusion — and sometimes it can — but mostly, it leads to better end results. I really like feedback. In most of the projects I’ve been involved with that have hit stumbling blocks that weren’t time or budget related, feedback was a sticking point. I’ve discovered the high value of teams who provide valuable ideas and feedback, as well as a love of those who are willing to bring ideas and questions to the table when they’re talking to their boss, manager, company owner or peers. People want to feel like they have an impact, like their thoughts and ideas matter to those around them. It’s human to attach our work satisfaction to how we’re valued by those around us, and by how the ideas we present are received. We tend to be a leadership-obsessed culture, so the idea of allowing other people to take the lead is often rejected out of hand, especially among small businesses, where it arguably may be needed most. Many small business owners lead from a place of strength, taking all the responsibility on themselves and making most or all the decisions. But that leads to high stress, sleepless nights, unhappy staff members and mistakes. Traditional leadership to most is having authority over others, so allowing others to give critical feedback or take the lead can feel counterintuitive. OCTOBER 2019

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Music & Sound Retailer October 2019, Vol 36 No 10  

In the October issue of the Music & Sound Retailer, learn the latest news about the percussion industry, discover what many retailers and ma...

Music & Sound Retailer October 2019, Vol 36 No 10  

In the October issue of the Music & Sound Retailer, learn the latest news about the percussion industry, discover what many retailers and ma...