There is only so much work that a single person can accomplish. No matter how efficient someone is, if they give themselves more responsibilities than they can reasonably handle, and take on too large a workload, it will only lead to stress and burnout. And we met a leader who would get so stressed out that he was prone to emotional outbursts, and it had become clear to his company that however brilliant he was, he would not be able to stay there if this behavior continued.

He held a high-responsibility leadership position, took his career very seriously, and was taking charge in many different innovative areas in his company. However, he was so driven and so convinced that his way was the right way, and those who did not agree should hit the highway that he was a very bad leader and he didn’t understand the negative impact that he was having on those around him. He needed to find a better way to interact with his team members and coach them more effectively. Rather than seeing himself as the source of all knowledge and power, his job had to be to give power and control to his team so that their focus could be on how they were going to develop the next innovation as a team.

Our work with him was about helping him understand his mindset, and that it was based in fear; he was fearful of not performing. It wasn’t as if he was unable to perform, he was just putting too much pressure on himself and he needed to understand the impact this was having on his work and his team.

We did some intensive work with him, including interviews with people he worked with which clarified with very detailed feedback what people wanted, what his impact was, what his team wanted and needed, and how specifically he could do things differently. He was given clear examples that were exactly relevant to his case and that he could action right away.

During our work together, he achieved a complete 180-degree change, and exploring this new world was fun for him as well. He had the realization that the responsibility for everything was not exclusively on his shoulders, and that in fact none of the executives in his company, or his team, wanted things to be that way because it was detrimental to the company.