A manager by any other name…

I came across yet another article this morning arguing the difference between management and leadership.  This one was called Ten Signs your Boss is a Manager — but not a Leader. It suggests that managers watch people to make sure they’re doing what they’re supposed to be doing, and continues:

‘The concept of traditional supervision is rooted in the fear that working people will misbehave or make mistakes if someone isn’t watching them to make sure they don’t.’

Hang on a minute. Weren’t we talking about management? Continue reading “A manager by any other name…”

Time to get really angry

People who don’t really know me might be surprised at what a seething mass of anger boils beneath this hugely tolerant exterior. All sorts of things get me going, but most of the time I keep a lid on it and only those closest to me realise that not everything’s as calm as it seems. And then, just occasionally, I explode.

Continue reading “Time to get really angry”

Are you a resilient little Moss Piglet?

There seem to be quite a few TED talks available on the subject of resilience. This in itself is an interesting indication of what working life must be like for many people these days: if so many speakers dedicate time and effort discussing the ability to cope with extreme pressure and bounce back, it must surely be something people are interested (possibly desperate) to hear about.

Continue reading “Are you a resilient little Moss Piglet?”

Influential leadership: how many habits does it take?

What made you open this post?

Anyone like me who regularly writes a blog is always interested in that question. One of the factors that undeniably influences people is a catchy title, preferably one that addresses a problem. I quite like posing questions, while others go for the numeric option such as 7 ways to unclog a toilet or 4 steps to a 6 figure income (find your own link for that one – I’m not endorsing anyone’s get-rich-quick scheme).

Continue reading “Influential leadership: how many habits does it take?”

Compassion at work

Making tough decisions is an unavoidable part of being a manager. It takes courage to cut staff, to tackle poor performance or to kill a much loved but no longer viable project. But that doesn’t mean you have to become toughened and uncaring about the people involved. There’s absolutely no reason that courageous decisions cannot be executed with compassion, and several good business reasons why they should.

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Courage at work

I’ve seen a lot of managers driven by fear at work. Fear of doing the wrong thing, fear of getting into trouble, fear of being judged and found wanting, fear that one of their team will outperform them, fear of conflict, fear of ending up at an employment tribunal, fear of losing their job. The list goes on and on.

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Wisdom at work

According to Confucius, wisdom, courage and compassion are the three universally recognised moral qualities of men. They’re also regarded as key elements of Buddhahood. But where do they fit into management?

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Why am I here?

Don’t worry I’m not having an existential crisis – it’s far too early in the day for that.

I recently read a discussion on an HR forum about the problems of retaining staff in a small business where promotion prospects are slim. My initial reaction was ‘well tough, you can’t’. Let’s face it, if an organisation’s managers are a permanent fixture, clinging on until they finally drop/retire, what’s left for anyone who’s the slightest bit ambitious or (let’s not be squeamish about it) wants to earn more? Continue reading “Why am I here?”