People-managing: not just about getting people to do stuff for you

My staff, perhaps wondering if they can safely cash their checks this month.
Last week a colleague noted "When you start working with other people, you spend a lot more time thinking about their paychecks than your own."

AMEN TO THIS. Things were tight over at the Empire this month, and at a certain point I made the decision to pay my staff instead of myself this pay period. Oddly, it was WAY easier to do that than to even consider delaying everyone else's checks.

In some ways, having a staff feels an awful lot like parenthood. I feel the burden of responsibility for making sure everyone's rent can get paid, everyone's learning something, everyone feels encouraged and supported. Having help is awesome (DO THIS! DO THAT! YAY!), but I don't think I ever factored in how much work managing staff was… including the incredible stress of feeling financially responsible for people I deeply respect.

(Oh and thanks to the response to our advertising specials, finances are back to just fine. If you want to get in on that discount, the deal ends in a couple days!)

  1. I SO hear you. I was recently promoted to a position at a small software company. I am responsible for a couple of small teams. Like 9 people total. I can't beleive how much time I spend on "people" issues – yes professional development, and job satisfaction and time off, and praising in public and correcting in private (when half the time I want to ask "WHAT were you thinking!!!" Are people happy – do they have enough to do so that they aren't bored or conversely too much to do so that they feel overwehlmed? I had NO idea – I expected to spend my days happily developing process and designing workflow. I had no idea such a large percentage of my time would be spent actually managing people. Thankfully I am not responsible for payroll – I think I would lose my mind. Just negotiating compensation and raises with the executive team is about all I can take. PLUS now I feel like I have to dress nicer…..

  2. This reminds of a family member who, when asked how his new job as a Chief Technical Officer was going said "On bad days, it's like I run a preschool. On good days I have minions!"

    1 agrees

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