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  • Tamar Balkin

Is It Possible To Strike The Balance Between Expecting Assistance And Taking The Initiative?

“Herald what your mother said

Read the books your father read

Try to solve the puzzles in your own sweet time

Some may have more cash than you

Others take a different view

My oh my, eh, eh, eh

You gotta be bad, you gotta be bold, you gotta be wiser

You gotta be hard, you gotta be tough, you gotta be stronger

You gotta be cool, you gotta be calm, you gotta stay together”

You Gotta Be by Des'ree (Click here for the song)

Photo by Michael G on Unsplash


“I don’t get why my internal sponsor doesn’t make sure I get a promotion"

Coaching client


Despite decades of research in the field of organisational psychology (Click here for Paul Spector’s eloquent article) in most modern organisations reality often diverges from the ideal. Organisations embrace fads, ignore peer-reviewed evidence and poor interpersonal interactions are rife.


The skilful maneuvering through complex situations to achieve tasks effectively can be aptly described as the competency of "organizational agility."

FYI: For Your Improvement : a Guide for Development and Coaching by Michael M. Lombardo and Robert W. Eichinger


In my experience all leaders feel tension between expecting help, needing help, collaborating and being self-sufficient. Regular readers know that irrespective of the circumstances all individuals are responsible for the following:

  • Effort, pride and care

  • Manners

  • Kindness

  • Cooperation

  • Communication

  • Listening

  • Self-awareness

  • Emotional regulation

  • Emotional intelligence

  • Physical health

  • Boundaries

  • Wellbeing

Taking responsibility for one's own behaviour does NOT excuse others from behaving inappropriately.

The following questions can help to determine when it's necessary to assume responsibility: What are my core values? Where am I headed in my life and work? What is my role in getting there? How do I ensure that my staff feel respected and fulfilled? Am I helping or hindering the personal and professional growth of my staff? Where do I need to take initiative and how? Do others really know what I can do and want to do? What else is important?


References are available on request.

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