We seem to talk a lot about goal setting. Short term goals, long term goals, team goals, individual goals. It appears that as organisations and senior leaders, we’ve finally cottoned on to the fact that the way to enable people to succeed is to give them something to aim at.
Category: management (Page 1 of 2)
I’ve written previously about the reasons why I believe you can’t teach someone to be a great people manager. You can improve someone’s people management skills, but my personal belief, borne out by my years of working with people and their line managers, is that people management, and inherently understanding how you inspire, develop and get the best out of people, in itself is not something which can be taught.
Throughout my HR career, arguably the skill I’ve been asked to provide most training in is the art of people management. So, here’s a possibly controversial view. I don’t actually believe you can teach the ability to manage people. Essentially, you either have it, or you don’t.
I suspect I’m unlikely to be alone with my confession that I have, on more than one occasion, found myself stuck inside a meeting which was serving almost no productive purpose. Meetings are both the saviour and the curse of the modern workplace. Saviours because, when run effectively, they can move decision making forward at a velocity which endless email trails with the world copied in could never hope to emulate. And curse because, as you will no doubt have experienced, the number of meetings which are actually run in such an efficient and productive manner can be few and far between.
When I first started out in the world of work, managers and directors were a distant and remote set of individuals. The less I saw of them, the more mythological features they took on. In my mind, they became strangely robotic creatures, who were able to manage teams of people and make difficult decisions without ever showing the slightest flicker of emotion. Don’t get me wrong: I had good managers, who took plenty of time to guide me and spend time on my development. But it never felt like they were truly human.
Having just spent the weekend with my children, I have been left in no uncertain doubt as to their views on the fairness (or otherwise) of the way that I treat them. Over the course of Saturday and Sunday I have been subject to a continuous stream of “It’s not fair.” Whether it’s the amount of cornflakes in their bowl of cereal, or the level of water they have left in their glass, or the fact that one of them has the exact piece of Lego the other one wanted at that moment in time.
There are few things I am more averse to in the HR sphere than a job description. At one time ubiquitous, I am now optimistic about the fact that they will shortly become a dying breed. And no one will celebrate their demise more than I will.
We’ve all heard that old adage: People leave managers, not companies. While that’s not necessarily the case 100% of the time, it is nevertheless undeniable that the person managing you has a significant impact on how you feel about your role, your potential for progression, and your organisation.
A friend of mine has been having a rather torrid time at work recently. She has a new line manager. Unfortunately for her, it transpires that this particular individual is not the best when it comes to managing people. Quite an issue, when they have responsibility for a team of twenty people.
Partings are a fact of life, and never more so than within the workplace, given on average, we change jobs ten to fifteen times over the course of our career.
While there are the odd occasions when employees will leave without notice, in the vast majority of instances there is a notice period to be worked out – typically anything from a single day up until six months, or even longer.