Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The Role of Party Leader ... AKA: Project Manager

Art by Phoenix O'Faery
You can learn more about Phoenix: Here
Who does what and when?  Your party leader should give guidance and direction to the party as a whole.  Direct support to keep people well and safe, make key decisions, keep party members whole when they falter, and be the one who keeps eyes on the goal.  In many ways, fantasy mirrors life regarding leadership.

Real life:

Leading and directing people to address real life activities is not particularly complicated.

Leaders blaze a trail for their people to follow.  They do things to show how they are done and keep doing things to help them get done.   When you are embarking on your own projects remember to be a leader.

Some people would argue, "Hey it is YOUR company." or  " YOU are the BOSS,  people do what you say". I will always respond with "that is lazy thinking, poor management, and counter-productive".

My model of operation runs like this:  Get in front and lead.  Do the thing, show how the thing is done, explain how the thing is done, and keep doing the thing while your people start doing the thing.
I repeat LEAD from the front.  Don't try to sit back and let others do all the work.  That is being LAZY, foolish, and won't get much accomplished.

Think about the generals of old who conquered empires.  The greatest of these lead from the front lines, and people followed.

So I am making every effort to lead from the front.  I get the work done I need to get done on the schedule I have. If I'm running behind in an area I am honest about it (with others and with myself too... that is important).  I listen to the people working with me and take their suggestions to heart.  I encourage my people, and help them through tough patches.

Leadership works.  People follow leaders and great things get done.

I was spending a lot of time on this line of thought as I ran headlong into a week where everyone had some problems.  Not just first world problems like missing a phone charger, but real problems. Sickness, day job trouble, ill family members and more all hit the art team over the last two weeks.

Leadership time. Consolation, affirmation, and no condemnation were the responses I provided.  My artists are all contractors/freelancers (which ever term you prefer), but I would be a poor example of professional planning/scheduling if I had not built in allowances for such things (which I did).  So stress was mitigated (in that I wasn't a cause for more of it) and people were able to be people.

When things like this happen and everyone is being affected, you should not push people to perform harder when you know they are already doing the best they can.  Quite the opposite actually.  You should slow the pace, allow your people the opportunity to help each other and lead them to do just that.  Don't leave anyone behind.

There is an old quote that resonates very deeply with me, "we all go home or none of us go home".
Here we have a variation on that, "we all finish together. No one gets left behind"

Some might counter with arguments to the effect of, "pushing for excellence builds excellent people" and other such arguments.  There is some truth in this but I am not arguing to coddle people because they are having an off day.  No, I am stating that compassion is called for when circumstances demand that while one of your people is tasked to capacity, and life is interfering, there is too much to do in the time allotted.

Example:  Child is sick and the parent needs to take care of child.  Rather this need is born of limited child care options, the severity of the ailment, or the disposition of the parent is irrelevant.  You have a need created, beyond the control of the parent, that needs to be addressed.  If you just let work build up for that person while they are away, that is not leadership.  You slow down and redistribute the immediate tasks.  Try it.  You will find that you have a higher quality of work performance, happier people working with you, and you will be more satisfied as a human being with how you are treating your fellow man.


Your party member who handles negotiations has just failed to dissuade the brigands/pirates/gang members (whichever) from pillaging the community.  You don't leave that party member to fight for his/her life and still task them with trying to calm the raging horde. No indeed!  You stand shoulder to shoulder and fight off the obstacle to your peace.  You win the day!  Together you build a tale of legend.

Not so different from real life, really.

Thanks for joining me on my ongoing adventure.  Please comment/share/follow as you like.
You can post questions in comments and I'll answer as I'm able (though I am only fluent in English).

I hope you will join me next time.😉

You can follow Sinopa Publishing on Facebook, and see new art produced for my products (I try to release  a bit of new art every week or two).

Sinopa Publishing LLC
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