Out of the blue on a Sunday evening, my phone beeps. I had received an email from one of the employees, ah its was Miles! (His name has been changed for this purpose) As always I am always opening messages or emails from the team, whether it be on weekends, in the evenings or on holidays – I will always do my best to reply to them as soon as possible.
Opening the email mail and reading the first paragraph made my heart skip a beat. Could this be right? Could this be something of truth? This is one of the nastiest email’s I have just encountered!
Taking half an hour to calm down and process what I just read, I needed to talk with my husband and let him know what has just happened.
After receiving a very nasty resignation from an employee, it gets you thinking… What on earth made them write such a horrible letter? From there you instantly think “what on earth have I done to this person”?
It’s funny how being an empath you take everything so personally. With a team of 10 employees and 14 VA’s I am literally running off my feet. Not to mention a 4 year old energiser bunny who is on 6 weeks of school holidays and is not in daycare! So you could possibly imagine my life right now, it is no easy feat juggling all of this, while getting up at 4am most mornings, making sure you can accomplish 2-3 hours of work before the household wakes up.
Just to break the company down a little, my husband deals with the guys and I deal with the admin team and the VA’s. between the both of us there are 24 people to deal with on a day to day basis.
For my husband having to deal with the guys within the company is very rare for me (and I am talking very rare!) about weekly or fortnightly hello’s and minor questions to clarify things as I need to manage my departments and the boys cross over every now and again.
Within minutes after receiving the email of resignation I was in tears for hours, (for those who know me, I NEVER cry! Like I want to, but I just don’t)wondering what on earth have I done wrong, going through all of our messages, emails and could not work it out. After a very long 30 minutes, I finally collected myself and spoke with my husband to tell him the news.
This made me shake! I barely spoke to the guy, I barely had much to do with him, but yet he had the confidence to attack me and create a dramatic exit.
Over the next 7 days, my husband made sure we never crossed paths to ensure I would not say anything, as I am a person of direction. I believe if you have a problem with someone, you should see them directly. This is also a policy within our business, no employee is to create water cooler gossip or drama and if you have a problem with someone you attend to them directly.
Those next 7 days were very hard for me, this is when I lost my power!
How did he frazzle me so much that I lost my vision and was totally shaken by the experience?
I have never experienced such twisted turn of events and by me not having a direct conversation with him actually threw me off my vision and took my power.
By making every effort to be a great leader, this was never what I had expected. I have actually spent over 12 months in a program on the other side of Australia, learning and creating myself as a top leader within our city to ensure we are a place of business that people want to join our company and who are on a waiting list.
I have created weekly leadership plans to ensure I am focused and create a positive environment for the team and I work on this belief every day. By being a great leader you show strength, whilst providing a safe environment with open arms.
But there is always a silver lining.
By not speaking to any of my employees about this situation (I only spoke to my husband about the email), I tried every effort to not create drama and conflict within all employees/team members as I completely thought I had failed as a leader.
My mantra for that week was “Keep to yourself Toni and don’t explain yourself to anyone, except to Miles”.
As Miles started creating drama within the team and started turning the entire department against me, I let it ride out. I really wanted to see where this went.
It is now Tuesday, I never would have thought this would happen so quickly. As I like to refer as this week, I was in a dirty washing machine on a super high spin mode right now and had no idea when it was going to stop.
Then there is was, a blissful moment that appeared and the spinning started to slow down a notch.
I had my entire team backing me, explaining to this staff member that – “if you can’t work with Toni, then you won’t be able to work with any small business owner. She is the best boss, she only calls once a week or fortnight and is never in our hair”. Literally, this is what my team members said to Miles – after he handed in his resignation.
Miles had convinced himself that what he did was right. It possibly was in his eyes. I had let him down somewhere along the way and he couldn’t recover from this. I do accept this as a leader, however when you have policies and procedures in place to ensure harmonious between the entire team (remember we have 24 people) one person can easily tear it apart and I couldn’t allow this to happen.
It has now been 6 weeks and I still had lost my mojo… it wasn’t until a very good friend of mine reminded me of what I have achieved and what I am currently doing. I had to take a few minutes and we talked about me being blocked with my vision and why I have stopped working so hard.
I told him that I have a fear right now and it’s stopping me from moving forward. “Tell me more Toni”, he said.
Well, I am afraid of moving forward and allowing people to judge me and take my power. But these people, they haven’t done anything with their lives and they aren’t business owners, they aren’t corporate executives, they aren’t people with large responsibilities. I am afraid of their judgment and their continuous negative approach and it’s affecting my day to day.
My friend told me “But then you realise that you are built differently, you have to protect your energy”. “You are one damn powerful person, look at all the stuff you have created. Don’t ever let someone pull you down”. He said.
And please, don’t think I need to be put on a pedestal- because I don’t..! But my friend knew, I have been struggling for weeks now, but I was the person who needed to be clear and to regain my power!
It’s safe to say, with a massive slap in the face and a few minutes to catch my breath, that I have now received my ah-ha moment and on the mend to reclaimed my power.
As I am a very communicative person, I feel the need to speak or write to ensure I get my message across. As for this time, I am now learning that I don’t need to talk to that old staff member and directly voice my concern, no! I am going make this one of the most important journeys moving forward and push through to ensure it does not happen again.
When you have people in your life who know that you need a little push, then they are your herd! Your herd will know what you need, even when you don’t. They are your biggest assets and your biggest achievements, without them, you are just you.