“I want to do great work, but my boss won’t let me.”
“I want to innovate, but my boss won’t let me.”
“I want to treat customers differently, but my boss won’t let me.”
What’s actually happening there is you’re saying to the boss, “I want to do something innovative. If it works, I’ll get the credit. But if it doesn’t work, because I’ve asked you first, you’ll get the blame.”
Well, no boss is going to go for that deal.
The opportunity here is, if you’re willing to take responsibility without asking for authority or resources and you’re willing to give away credit, you’ll be amazed at how much you’re allowed to do.
Because if you’re not waiting for authority or resources, and you’re taking ownership of the outcomes, many organization is ready to hand out responsibilities like candy.
And if you’re giving away credit, a line would form out the door with people saying, “Do it again, let me take the credit this time.” And you’ll get to do it again.
This change will take a while, not one day. But if you’re managing upwards, managing downwards and managing sidewards, with relentless positivity, you’ll find that people will reciprocate.
If you start contributing to the culture, the culture would start contributing back.