What Keeps Supervisors Up At Night and How to Address It

In the realm of supervision, sleepless nights are all too common. The anxieties, the doubts, the nagging fears - they all come with the territory. Every supervisor has faced that gnawing worry, that fear of the unknown, whether it's dealing with a challenging personality or battling the impostor syndrome, questioning their own competence in the role.



Doubt is inevitable, decisions are second-guessed, and the desire for the best outcome for your team can lead to over-analysis of every move you make. Supervisors, you are your own harshest critics.


Fear of the Unknown

In safety departments, the fear takes a specific form. There’s the dread that the decisions made by your team might lead to unfavorable outcomes. Despite meticulous rules and procedures, uncertainty looms large. Will your team truly comprehend these protocols? Will they make the right choices when faced with unexpected challenges? The worry intensifies when you consider their reactions under pressure or wonder if they truly have each other's backs.



Overcoming the Fear

But here's the truth: a CareFull supervisor doesn't lose sleep over these concerns. It's not about arrogance; it's about certainty. How do you achieve this peace of mind? By fostering trust within your team, establishing clear standards, and encouraging collaboration.


1. Foster Trust:

Build a foundation of trust within your team. Trust them to adhere to the standards and guidelines you've established together. Trust their capabilities and intentions. Trust, when reciprocated, alleviates the fear of the unknown.


2. Establish Clear Standards:

Clearly define expectations and standards. When everyone is on the same page, there's less room for doubt. Ensure that your team understands the rules and procedures, leaving no ambiguity. Clarity reduces anxiety and promotes confidence in decision-making.



3. Encourage Collaboration:

Promote a culture of collaboration and mutual support. When team members work together, watch out for each other, and communicate effectively, the fear of them not being in sync dissipates. Encourage open dialogue, teamwork, and a sense of responsibility toward one another.



Supervisors, it's time to celebrate your certainties and address your doubts. Trust in your team, establish clear guidelines, and foster collaboration. When you do, the question, "What keeps you up at night?" will be met with a confident response: "Nothing." Embrace these strategies, and watch your fears dissolve, paving the way for more restful nights and empowered leadership.


Topics: safety culture, supervisor leadership, positive supervisor