Talking Points: Encourage an environment where self-starters will thrive

Managers don’t need to touch everything

  • Give self-starters a sense of ownership
  • Help develop a trust-based relationship
  • Don’t compete or attempt to be better than your staff
  • Give self-starters access to leadership

Celebrate successes, never dwell on failures

  • Nothing kills self-starters’ attitudes like harping on missteps
  • The best innovations were always preceded by failures
  • Not everything is a home run, small things count too
  • Do not just show up when thing go wrong

Allow for space

  • Never allow the words “we’ve always done it this way” stand
  • Let self-starters challenge the status quo
  • Don’t let self-starters cut themselves off from the group by being too rigid
  • Look for opportunities to launch a career rather than keeping butts-in-seats

Ask more questions

  • Rather than making statements, ask questions
  • Set clear expectations and then step back

How are you running staff meetings?

  • Do you always talk first?
  • Is there space on the agenda for others?
  • Don’t list the meetings you will attend, focus on the why
  • Never have a meeting to justify existence

Call projects “beta” or “demos”

  • Self-starters want to be able to try new things
  • If something didn’t work, be willing to kill it off; self-starters may have trouble letting it go
  • Try an agile approach if possible; more small goals, sprint to get something done and out into the world

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