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Letting Go...


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23 replies to this topic

#16 torka

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Posted 31 July 2003 - 03:15 AM

Part of that, of course, is hiring the right person, part of it is forcing employees to do what you want or face termination, but the bigger part of it is simply being highly visible (shoulder to shoulder, remember?), while being the kind of person someone wants to emulate.

I, too, have a background in training, and have worked with companies of all sizes, from small partnerships to major multinationals.

I agree with almost all of what you've said, but I have to take issue with the idea of "forcing" an employee to "do what you want or face termination".

No part of effective management and delegation is about "forcing" intelligent adult employees to do anything. Motivating, yes. Forcing, no. :aloha:

Employee education is a long term investment, but it's also a two way street. If you've hired well, it's entirely likely that your employee may come up with better ways of attaining one or more of your goals than you had.

It's about achieving your goals for the company, not about "forcing" your employees to "do what you want". Yes, as the owner you have the final say, but why waste the motivation and brainpower of your employees by insisting that it's "your way or the highway"?

IMHO, of course, and (as usual) YMMV. ;)

==Torka

#17 Ron Carnell

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Posted 31 July 2003 - 07:57 AM

I absolutely agree, Torka! My best employees were all smarter than me, and I would have been a fool to squander their intelligence and creativity by "training them into a corner." However, having lived on both sides of the Training street, I'm also pragmatic enough to realize that force, whether implicit or explicit, is always lurking down the nearest alley.

Whether you say it, imply it, ignore it, or even deny it, the threat of termination in the employee/boss relationship exists. In my experience, ambiguity helps no one. "If you do this, this, or that, you will be fired" both sets the boundaries AND eliminates employee confusion. People, just like children, want to know the boundaries.

It's important, for this reason, to realize there are essentially two ways to train a person to perform a given task.

1. "This is the result I would like to see, and here is one way of achieving that result."

2. "This is the result I would like to see, and here is the only acceptable way of achieving that result."

The wise trainer will choose the appropriate method and make the difference very, very clear to the employee. As always, as in everything, communication is the key.

We always tried to use number one as much as possible in my company, because it's good for the employee and for the business, but in any industry there are times when the second method is inevitable. Employees, especially in the training phase, don't always see the big picture clearly enough to find "better ways" of reaching our goals. As a simplistic example, a very important goal in my business was to maximize the life-time ROI for existing clients. Billable hours and upgrades were the results I wanted to see, and I motivated employees to achieve that goal with both financial incentives and increased recognition. Padding your hours or selling the client something they didn't need, however, were NOT acceptable ways to achieve the goal, so we had a strictly enforced rule. "Cheat a client and you WILL be fired."

Training and motivation must always be offset with rules, and the rules must always be imposed by force. My personal philosophy might be best expressed by paraphrasing Einstein. "Make no more rules than are absolutely needed. And no less." :lmao:

#18 dragonlady7

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Posted 31 July 2003 - 08:26 AM

Bravo ! Don't force employees to do anything or they'll quit embittered and tell all their friends and relatives that your company's bad. Depending on the size and scope of your company, that could be insignificant, but it's never a good thing.

I like being motivated. My boss gave me two compliments yesterday and it made my whole *month*. The fact that he notices what I do, notices that I've been working hard on it, and realizes that it's good means a whole lot to me and has done a lot towards turning my bad attitude into, well, a neutral one. But it's better than it was!!
So I actually didn't have to make myself get out of the car to come in here to work today. That's something. That means he's getting a whole lot more out of me today. That's very good.

Motivating employees by positive feedback and encouragement is the most important part of being a manager or other boss-figure.

#19 copywriter

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Posted 31 July 2003 - 09:15 AM

Excellent ideas by everybody! It is hard... especially for one "man" shows who have poured their blood, sweat and tears into their company.

I started out doing the online gig part-time in '99. I would work my day job and come home in the evenings and on weekends and do "my" business. Then I arranged to work at my day job part-time (leaving at 1:00 each day). I finally quit to do this full-time.

When you put that much of yourself into your business, you want to be very sure that things go right.

I guess the one thing I do most when looking for help is to ask to be in the loop throughout the whole process (of whatever) for the first few times. While I try to stay out of the way :D I do want to know that I'm being represented well, that things are being done the way they should be, etc.

Normally, after a few times of tracking the assistant's every move I lighten up and let them do their thing.

That's just what comes of being a control freak!

:)

#20 stoli

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Posted 03 August 2003 - 09:02 AM

Motivating employees by positive feedback and encouragement is the most important part of being a manager or other boss-figure.

Yes, I know that positive feedback is a better way to motivate employees.

Treat others the way you would wanted to be treated yourself. This goes both in personal and professional relationships.

Lead by example. Yada, Yada, Yada!

All this sounds so good on paper.

In reality, sometimes a "good swift kick in the ass" will get your point across a lot quicker than the more "positive" ways.

There are times when you really do have to crack the whip! :)

#21 dragonlady7

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Posted 04 August 2003 - 06:31 AM

Most of the times when i've needed a whip cracked at me have been times when i had been so mismanaged and discouraged that I had no motivation to do the job on my own.

that said, even at the best job in the world some gentle prodding would probably be needed to get me going on a rough morning. Like this one. Ugh. Why am I so tired after a weekend? Oh, right, because I was too busy to sleep. Hmm... I'm afraid if anyone cracks a whip at me today they're not going to get much by way of results.

#22 TBroadfoot3rd

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Posted 04 August 2003 - 05:50 PM

Having read the thread I take this from a different point of view. I enjoy being a free lance person. I work under various types of personality types and to me being a sub-contractor allows me to be in the background building things and getting things done with the minimum of supervision.

As Jill mentioned it has to have a trust factor involved to really be able to work and perform the required tasks in a timely manner so that the person who is doing the client soothing and interface has happy people they are dealing with not freaked out individuals because a project has gone off schedule and budget. So the focus I have is to make sure instructions/tasks are well defined with a clear deadline that is doable from the outset. Setting expectations is one thing but when the expectation of the client is not set in a realistic fashion the project deteriorates rather quickly.

I like working in a manner that affords all concerned the best possible web environment for the consumer/end viewer. This does take time, energy and a lot of communication as to status of each phase going forward to the finished product/service. So for those that can not delegate down to competent talent that know what they are doing it will be long sleepless nights and weekends of working while those that have put together a talented group tend to enjoy the work more and have more time to explore other aspects of life or the business they have created.

#23 Scottie

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Posted 05 August 2003 - 02:20 PM

This thread just took an important turn into Getting the Best Out of People so I split it off. A very important subject that deserves it's own thread.

How to delegate stuff can stay here! omg

#24 Peter

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Posted 10 August 2003 - 10:02 AM

Hi Everybody,

Being able or not being able to delegate tells a lot about your self!

If you can't do it or always are upset about the returned quality or the speed in which it is done, then you´re basically a bad manager.

A bad manager is not able to "see" what other people are good at. Hense, they give the wrong jobs to the wrong people.

My best advice would be: Don't expect them to be you! Expect them to be them selves. Know what their strong points are and use those points. That way you will feel more confident that the work will done right, and you will feel a lot better about your self(very important!!!).

Best regards,

Peter




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