How Or­gan­i­sa­tions Can Help Man­agers Let Go A Lit­tle

The Economic Times - - Careers: The Fast Track - PRABIR JHA

world view. This is dan­ger­ous. In to­day’s re­al­ity, th­ese man­agers will need to get in­quis­i­tive, open and agile in their will­ing­ness to lis­ten to, if not proac­tively seek out newer prac­tices.


Many such man­agers have grown as or­der tak­ers in their ca­reers and pre­fer to be or­der givers as they got into higher roles. The best of tal­ent to­day will not work with this lead­er­ship style. They need the space and au­ton­omy to ex­per­i­ment and even fail. Man­agers need to al­low enough space for de- good­will that would have ac­tu­ally aided them to achieve more. This mind­set is dan­ger­ous and sub­ver­sive to larger en­ter­prise in­ter­ests and needs a com­plete re­pu­di­a­tion.


By build­ing sys­tems and pro­cesses, the more evolved lead­ers move op­er­a­tions be­yond them­selves. Many, how­ever, still feel their power and author­ity threat­ened by th­ese. They do not build clear suc­ces­sors nor hire them. They be­lieve in per­pet­ual rel­e­vance and mor­tal­ity. In the process, they put the en­ter­prise to grave risks. The op­er­at­ing mores re­main un­changed even as the op­er­at­ing con­text may have dra­mat­i­cally al­tered. Best man­agers are more self-as­sured and al­ways ready to do things be­yond what they have al­ways done. And they build a fan­tas­tic suc­ces­sion bench, pos­si­bly the most pow­er­ful legacy to leave be­hind.


Many of such lead­ers pre­fer to keep things to them­selves. They would avoid shar­ing in­for­ma­tion, com­mu­ni­cate as lit­tle as pos­si­ble and gen­er­ally be sus­pi­cious of any­one try­ing to con­nect with any­one on their teams. They would rather be the con­duit of any­thing that goes to their team. In to­day's times, this be­hav­iour is both dys­func­tional and de­rail­ing.

A lot even­tu­ally de­pends on the cul­ture the top lead­er­ship is com­mit­ted to. A smart lead­er­ship knows it must pres­sure test its first prin­ci­ples (val­ues, lead­er­ship be­hav­iours, cul­ture) for rel­e­vance and ad­e­quacy. Done well, hon­estly and in time, or­gan­i­sa­tions will dis­cover their man­agers ac­tu­ally be­come more when they be­come less.

(The views ex­pressed are per­sonal)

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