Mike Chitjian, Publisher
IT TAKES TWO by Gene Boccialetti
In today's challenging environment managers and employees face constant demands to change. And while much attention has been paid to changes managers need to make to develop new leadership skills, little attention has been given to managing oneself in the role of being a subordinate.
With a basic understanding of the different ways people approach being a subordinate and some idea of your own style, you can learn to become more flexible in your approach. Flexibility is key to you and your boss experiencing more effective working relationships.
MAIN FACTORS IN SUBORDINATE STYLE
Deference: The importance placed on exerting influence in the relationship with your boss.
Distance: The preference for having or not having a personal relationship with your boss.
Divergence: The tendency to agree or disagree with your boss over goals and the methods of achieving them.
ORIENTATIONS TO MANAGING RELATIONSHIPS
Deference, distance, and divergence commonly combine to form nine styles describing subordinate authority relationships which can be grouped into three supercategories.
Accommodating Styles: Tend to be high on deference and low on divergence. They usually agree with those in authority.
1. Military: Rarely push for influence and tend not to see their bosses as allies.
2. Helper: Want influence, but will not push hard for it. They see their role as the trusting helpmate.
3. Diplomat: Seek personal contact with their bosses. If there is disagreement, they prefer artful maneuvering over confrontation.
4. Partisan: Their overriding obligation is to their bosses and not to the organization.
Autonomous Styles: Their common characteristic is low deference. They prefer general directions and dislike being closely monitored.
5. Independent: Want influence for both ideological and practical reasons. They are not comfortable in an implementer role.
6. Counselor: Have a strong sense of themselves as experts and like personal relationships with their bosses.
Adversarial Styles: Generally characterized by low deference and high divergence. These subordinates want pull with their bosses who they see as adversaries or competitors.
7. Gamesman: Have strong technical skills and usually disagree with their bosses over goals and methods.
8. Rebel: Openly challenge those in authority based on personal resistance to structure.
9. WhistIebIower: Defer to their bosses until their ethical breaking point is reached, then they go public with their complaints.
ACTION STEPS TO DEVELOP MORE FLEXIBILITY
Start with dialogue and find out if your boss thinks you are working together effectively.
Ask your boss to evaluate you on the three factors of deference, distance and divergence.
Bring underused traits into play in appropriate situations.
Establish behavioral indicators that show whether you are or are not doing what you set out to do. Get ongoing feedback from your boss.
Repeat steps one through four-and keep adjusting until shifting your subordinate orientation becomes second nature.
MANAGING YOUR OWN SUBORDINATES
Since you are also a boss, it is important to "reverse the lens" and consider how you manage those who report to you. Be sensitive to their styles in relation to your own and the work tasks faced. Doing so will enhance organizational effectiveness and efficiency.
TO ORDER A COPY OF THE BOOK or for information on subscribing to The Fast Track's audio summaries of the best business books on tape call 1-800-BE-AHEAD. (1-800·232-4323)
Highlights are based on an audio summary produced and distributed by the Fast Track Publishing Company of the book It Takes Two by Gene Boccialetti,. © 1995 Jossey-Bass Inc., Publishers. Summarized, recorded, and distributed by permission of Jossey-Bass Inc., Publishers. Highlights © 1995 Fast Track Publishing Company, Forest Park, IL.
Dealing With Sexual Harassment
Heightened concern over sexual harassment in the workplace has increased pressure for businesses to deal with the problem. Business owners and entrepreneurs must protect their employees and businesses from sexual harassment. Stephen Pepe, head of labor and employment law with a Los Angeles-based law firm, urges businesses to take the following preventive steps in order to stay clear of sexual harassment problems.
Establish a written sexual harassment policy. State in no uncertain terms the type of behavior you consider unacceptable, such as dirty jokes, sexual innuendoes, and sexist cartoons. Give a copy to every one of your employees. "Quite simply, when it comes to sexual harassment" notes Pepe, "you do not have freedom of expression in the workplace."
Enforce your policy. Encourage employees to report sexual harassment without fear of retribution. If there appears to be a strong basis for the claims, act upon them. Pepe suggests discipline ranging from warnings and suspensions to termination, depending on the amount of evidence available.
Lead by example. If a certain behavior. even if done unintentionally, could be construed as sexual harassment, don't do it. Any kind of inappropriate behavior should not be tolerated.
© by and reprinted with permission of "Successful Supervisor," The Dartnell Corp., 4660 Ravenswood Avenue, Chicago, IL 60640 (800) 621-5463.
Several readers have criticized some recent columns that suggested business success was largely a matter of luck. They miss my point: If you believe success is mostly due to luck, there are strategies you can pursue to lure luck out of hiding. (By contrast, if you believe that orderly plans and getting up an hour earlier than the next person are the answer, then by all means arise before the rooster and start planning.)
Try following these 30 strategies:
1. At bats. More times at the plate, more hits.
Reprinted with permission from the Chicago Tribune.
The symptoms of a mid-career slump are easy to spot, the solutions not so easy to apply. Sometimes a slump can last a week, sometimes a year. Maybe forever. If you're in a slump, try to get out of it immediately. Here are symptoms and some solutions:
Lackluster? Do you work half-heartedly? You'll know this symptom if it takes longer to get things done in the first few hours of the day.
Tired? Do you tire frequently? This is worse than working half-heartedly. You'll know this symptom if you're tired in the morning and exhausted by 3:30 p.m.
Procrastinator? Do you procrastinate--especially in the area of decision making? It's a sure sign of job weariness.
Change. Remember that you must change, not your organization. Try looking at your job through different eyes, and tell yourself you'll accomplish one task one step at a time.
Rededicate. Work as hard as you can on every project.
Set goals. Write them down. Strive to achieve them!
Beep, don't sleep. Buy a watch that beeps on the hour. Every time you hear a beep, ask yourself if you're working as hard as you believe you can and if you're accomplishing your goals.
© by and reprinted with permission of "Effective Executive", The Dartnell Corporation, 4660 N. Ravenswood Avenue, Chicago. IL 60640
Candid answers to these five questions could help you cut waste:
Does this activity add value, improve quality, enhance customer service, improve communication, increase employee motivation and morale, encourage innovation or speed decision making? Note: Any activity that doesn't rate a 4 or 5 on a scale of 10 is a definite "no"-to 5- a definite "yes"--probably wastes time and resources.
Would it matter if we halted the activity? What would the con- sequences be? Are the consequences worth the cost of continuing the activity? · Are we duplicating activities-- either intentionally or without realizing it? · Who started this activity and how and when did it start? Does the reason for starting the activity still make sense? · Can another person, business unit or company perform the activity better, faster or cheaper? Are we doing jobs, making parts or offering services that we could outsource?
Cited in "Communications Briefings," 1101 King Street, Suite 110, Alexandria, VA 22314. (800) 888-2084.
It costs less to keep the customers you have than to find new ones. And one of the best ways to keep them is to treat their complaints as gifts. Here's how:
Thank customers and explain why you're pleased that they complained. Example: "Thank you. I'm glad that you told me so I can fix this for you and prevent it from happening again."
Apologize for the problem. Note: This should not be the first step. Your apology will pack more punch if it comes after you've thanked them and explained why you're glad they complained.
Promise to deal with the problem right away. Hearing you say this relaxes the customers because they know you're going to act.
Collect all the information you need. Ask: "So I can act quickly on this, could you please give me some information?"
Correct the mistake--and do it as quickly as possible.
Follow up to make sure customers are satisfied with what you've done.
Cited in "Communications Briefings", 1101 King Street, Suite 110, Alexandria, VA 22314. (800) 888-2084.
Give your name and phone number first when you leave a message an an answering machine. Reason: Listeners who need to hear your phone number again won't replay the entire message to get it.
Keep this in mind: 'You're never not communicating." Reason: What you don't say may say as much as what you do say. And where you spend your time can send as clear a message as what you do while you're there.
Cited in "Communications Briefings," 1101 King Street, Suite 110, Alexandria, VA 22314, (800) 888-2084.
[ Home Page | About Markar | Principals | Positions Available | Clients
| Candidates | Newsletter | FAQ's | Feedback | Guestbook | TOC ]
Copyright © 1998-2003 Markar Associates, Inc. All
Site Design by: RC Design