Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Command and Destroy

Wow ........ Work is very busy at present and I am spending a lot of time traveling so I feel a little bit guilty about not updating my Simplicity Blog every day.

Funny how this Blogging has created its own discipline on me!!

It got me thinking about something I have always believed - that the best way to make sure people do their job effectively is to leave it to them and not tell them what to do. But always be available to support them of course if need be.

People set their own standards in my opinion and the great majority - I would estimate approximately 99.9% - hold themselves accountable to extremely high self imposed quality standards about their work.

I believe people respond far more effectively to trust from their boss rather than being what I call 'over supervised.'

The best judge of whether I have done an effective job is always the person I see in the mirror.

I worked in the National Health Service for 35 years and there is probably no greater ‘supervision culture’ anywhere in the world than the NHS.

Being out of the NHS for 8 months has convinced me there is over supervision and far too much ‘managing people’ in the NHS. We really should allow those people just to fly. They are more than capable. The biggest thing that holds most of them back is old style management approaches of ‘command and control.’

I would rather call that style ‘control and destroy
.’

6 comments:

Mike said...

Hear, Hear! You nailed it right on the head, Trevor. I've always been an anti-micromanager and hated working for the "command and control" type. I'm part of a company that is struggling with multiple leadership personalities. Some of those leadership styles are cultural (we're a multinational with management from more than one country), and some are personal. It's always been fun to be the "James Dean" of the place, even though it is exasperating at times.

I say empower the people! Give them the training, responsibility, authority, and a clear idea of the boundaries--then get out of the way and let them shine.

Trevor Gay said...

Well said Mike - I agree with every word you say - you and me against the word my friend :-)

Trevor Gay said...

Shuold have said 'world' of course :-)

James said...

Hi Trevor, First posting here since you emailed me the link but your blog is a regular lunch-break visit for me these days! This "Command and Destroy" posting strikes a real chord with me. Just yesterday I witnessed a behaviour from a senior "leader" which proved why your posting is so accurate. I've seen very capable and insightful people retreat into their shells due to a feeling that their opinions or ideas will not be valued. A leader's role is just that, to lead a team. Why do some leaders project an impression of thinking (even if they don't really think it) that their judgement is superior and that all decisions should go through them, or even be made by themselves?

It's fine and sensible that they are abreast of the activities going on in their organisations and that they discuss when they have a different view, but making others feel that they are not considered trusted enough to make decisions has an enormous detruimental effect.

A leader's key role is to encourage them to be creative, inspired and most of all confident in their own judgement. We all know that taking a cionsidered level of risk is required in business of all kinds these days to stay abreast (let alone ahead!). Who will take a risk when they fear that they will not be supported by their management?

Removal of empowerment to make decisions crushes confidence, smothers creativity and worst of all removes that all important internal desire to make themselves, their teams and therefore their leaders, successful.

Trevor Gay said...

Brilliant James

I agree with every word you say and I rest my case - Control and Destroy is the worst form of leadership.

Hope you are well and tell your friends about the Blog :-)

Omara said...

It is wonderful to find posts from leaders who think right, I guess it also feels right :-)

I would simplify this issue as the difference of leading by fear or leading by Love. One makes of the organization a cage; the other makes a garden.