You know, BadConsultant always provides us much linkicity
[made up words are cool]
as he possibly can, but all the while remains conscious of the sinking feeling in the pit of his stomach, that his executive readership clientele are simply too important and busy to actually spend time absorbing information
[unless it's in Arial font, 48-pt bullets on the very last page of a powerpoint presentation]
in order to drive better, more considered decisions.
So, we’ll summarise as we always do – aiming to please, and keen to at least get past the introduction – the essence of Part I:
Most of your management population entered that role by accident because they, and the modern organization they work in, wanted more of their individual contribution. By the time this fundamental error was realized, it was too late to reverse and compounded by the ‘climb, climb, climb’ myth. Bottom line:
You have way more managers than you need, most of whom aren’t interested in the role and are doing the minimum necessary to not be demoted or fired for dereliction of duty.
We’ll wait for the apoplexy to die down.
Because, really, we want to help. This is for your own good.
A couple of weeks back, we posted a section from ‘The Strengths Springboard – is your organization ready?’ entitled ‘Checking in, not checking up’
[we know, we know... you're too busy and important to read other posts]
which basically illuminated the fact that in most modern corporations, a manager of 10 or more direct reports is running a multi-million dollar value portfolio. And that would be People Value(®) as opposed to Human Capital
[a terminology designed to perpetuate 20th century industrialized manufacturing expansion thinking]
Let’s see now… So, you have multi-million dollar value portfolios being managed by people who never wanted to grow value and who have only the minimal skill to protect against value loss. Doesn’t exactly speak to growth, does it? In fact, BadConsultant might hypothesise
[and would happily submit a statement of work for an in-depth study]
that much of the culture of resentment is bred by the presence of this perma-bear attitude towards People Value.
And as there’s no way on earth that there would be any performance management of any but the most disastrous of managers
[performance management? hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha]
you’re left with a simple challenge: how to move the bears to a more bullish frame of mind?
[not too much though, we wouldn't want to let them loose in the china shop now, would we?]
Or in other words: What do we do with all these managers?
And here’s where the second error of the management chain comes in.
All managers can be great managers
They can’t. Like everything in life
[as measured by statisticians]
you’ll find a normal distribution.
But still you’ll believe the error – it’s what the modern organization excels at doing, finding mythologies that fit the status quo, refusing to validate or measure those myths, and presenting them as absolute truths. In this case, the status quo has been built on the mythology that people higher in the organization hierarchy are superior to those below, and therefore
[it's almost painful to type this bunk]
have fewer/less weaknesses than those below them. The mythology feeds upon itself until senior execs are considered infallible.
[which may sound similar to another organization you've heard of?]
All managers can be great managers
The fall-out from this second error is huge and, as this post is getting long already, BadConsultant will be back soon to cover it in much, much more detail…