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Thursday, January 26, 2006
For days now, I have been feeling so stressed out. After going through my activities for the week, I was spending a lot of time trying to help a few colleagues with their problems aside from the ones that are really part of my job.

Dr. Blanchard, co-author of the One Minute Manager, said that you are helping your people too much if you take responsibility for the care and feeding of their monkeys. "Monkeys" in this context refers to the tasks, jobs, or problems that are the responsibility of other people, normally subordinates, friends, or children.

Saying, "Let me help," or even worse, "Let me do it for you" is making that person walk away thirty pounds lighter, because now the monkey (the problem) is yours.

Putting too many of other people's monkeys on your back causes stress and reduces the time available for your main responsibilities. The tendency of your subordinates and friends is to check up on how you are doing with the problem.

To avoid having these monkeys on your back, try doing the following responses:
1. SUPPORTIVE RESPONSE - tell them you understand the complexity of the problem and that you are willing to talk to them about how they (not you) can solve it.
2. DELEGATING RESPONSE - inform them that this is their responsibility. Offer suggestions for them to try.
3. COACHING RESPONSE - if you see that they do not have the ability to handle their monkeys, give them specific directions. Explain the next move or strategy and then supervise how they carry it out.

Blanchard teaches that the two biggest problems in possessing other people's monkeys are: they must be cared for and fed by you, and their former owners now check to see how you are doing with their monkeys.
3:00 PM | Permalink |


  • At 1/25/2006 11:55 PM, Blogger FRIDAY'S CHILD

    I really don't agree with the 3 suggestions especially the 3rd one. This is still an added stress on your back. Wouldn't it be scary later that this monkey become a gorilla later on? Anyway if you think you can do it then you can.
    People may doubt what you say, but they will always believe what you do.

  • At 1/26/2006 2:44 AM, Blogger Trinity13

    I def don't miss the corporate world!

  • At 1/26/2006 11:26 AM, Blogger Chrixean

    i think my biggest problem is really not knowing how to say no to people. If I asserted this more then I wouldn't have monkeys, gorillas, chipanzees or whatever primate there is, riding on my back.