Interruptions are your fault.
I don’t mean all interruptions. Of course not.
But a significant number of them are.
If you’re getting constantly interrupted you’ve probably trained your reports to treat you like their own personal Google.
Got a question? Go to the boss! She’s got the answer.
All of your reports know you will give them an answer.
That’s your mistake!
You might indeed have the answers, and most likely you do.
But you’ve become “Google with a pulse” for your reports.
How to flip the script and limit interruptions
If you lead with answers, and many do, you’re creating dependency in your reports.
It might feel good at first that your reports depend on you, but you will eventually end up complaining about all the people lined up at your desk waiting for you. (I hear and see this pattern all the time)
Try this instead: Lead with questions, not answers.
Leading with questions forces your reports to think. It forces them to wrestle with the problem. It forces them to do their own research and find a workable solution.
It’s your job to force your reports out of dependency and into competency.
You grow your team’s capacity by growing them as individuals.
And you get the added benefit of having fewer interruptions during your workday allowing you to get more done.
How do you like to grow your team’s competency?