Friday, February 11, 2005

The best is not necessarily the best!

Why do we promote the best 'technical person' to manage the department?

For instance;

The most highly qualified accountant runs the finance department.

The best sales person is in charge of the sales department

The most qualified Doctor runs the operating theatre.

And so it goes on.

In sport or entertainment the best player or performer does not usually make the best manager. How many top class footballers from the past have ever made top notch managers? - You can count them on the fingers of one hand.

In fact most 'performers' do not want a management role. They want to do what they are good at.

It simply does not follow that the ‘best player’ is necessarily the ‘best manager.’

This got me thinking about organisations and selecting people to run departments.

Why not - for instance - have the Chef who runs a huge and busy hotel kitchen in the best hotel in the local town recruited to run the Operating Theatre at the local hospital?

Why not get the person running the factory line of 100 people working to acute and very testing time frames to came along and run the time tabling department of the local bus company?

Why not have a professional film director running the local retail mega store?

Why not get a mother - who has brought up two children and successfuly managed the budget for the family for 18 years as well as looked after her husband and run the home and all that goes with that - to run the finance department in the hospital?

We are usually ‘pigeon holed' into a predictable career progression moving from one level to the next as part of what has become known as 'natural progression.'

My feeling is things are changing dramatically and the organisations that will flourish in future will be those that realise they should be recruiting people who will do 'interesting things' - rather than follow traditional thinking and career paths.

Food for thought mybe?


Anonymous said...

I agree Trevor. I believe rather in digression than in progression.

Felix Gerena

Trevor Gay said...

Great comment Felix - variety is the spice of life!

Keep rattling the cage my friend


Rocky said...

I really like the topic. i have been in many discussions that are right in line with this. I have often used the example of great athletes not necessarily making good coaches or mangers or front office people. They often found the skills came so easy to them that they had difficulty understanding why others don't have the same skill. Also, possessing a skill does not mean that one can teach it or train it. That goes for business as well. great topic.