Here is my first profound insight from our vacation.
Why do we have days off from work? To have, stay with me here, a day off from work!
Why is this so hard? Why do so many of us insist on working on days where we are literally being paid to do nothing?
Off days serve at least 3 purposes:
1. Relaxation and renewal
2. Fresh ideas and new perspectives
3. Freedom for your team and from your team
Do you trust the people you work with? If you were unreachable for the next week, would everything run smoothly? For most of us, we never have to face that question because it is nearly impossible to be unreachable. We drove 800 miles yesterday across five states and my Blackberry never lost contact once.
It is critical that your team has your trust and respect and one way you can show that is by letting go. They must have the space to make decisions, make mistakes, and be creative without your help (positive) or interference (negative). If you want to grow leaders, you have to give people room to grow.
I almost called the office two different times today. It sounds so simple and innocent, after I all, these people are my friends and I just want to say hello and see how things are going. In reality, though, it is a subtle form of micro-management. They need freedom from me, and I need freedom from work.