Why have I said this to you?

Because, the person who is normally asked to do something, is usually, the most effective person within the team, project or organisation.

I have known a lot of people who have enjoyed such privileged status – haven’t you?

busy personSuch people are usually fully committed and effective.  One such person once surprised me, his boss and even himself.   He made an excuse not to except an invitation to do a particularly important and demanding task, which was most unusual, as he was normally more than willing to accept any challenge put to him? He had a reputation for willingness, and to accept and perform any task.

But on this particular occasion he surprised us all by saying “NO”, and he went on to say “I have another equally important project to complete”.

So, Why the change?

Well when, in confidence, I asked him “why the change of attitude?”.

He said “I can only be fully supportive if I believe that the request has been made of me in good faith”.

In other words he was saying “Yes I’m a busy person, and normally I am happy to help, but if these sorts of requests are not handed out on a fair and equitable basis, eventually even the most committed and supportive of us will eventually say “NO”!

So be careful when you ask a busy person to do something!

It would appear that once requests become the norm i.e. ‘give it to Fred or Mary to sort’ it undermines, devalues and reduces the willingness of busy and effective people to respond positively.