Without This, a Void Filled With Shenanigans

I am told that we need more leadership around here. I am told that we manage things, but we lead people.

My experience tells me otherwise.

I believe, especially as companies grow larger, that we need more management. I would concur that it is very difficult to manage people. People resist being managed. But, it’s not the people who need to be managed, it’s the relationships between those people. In a company, it is the working relationships that need to be managed.

I hear about personality conflicts in an organization. But, I don’t see a personality conflict, I see an accountability and authority issue. In an organization, we rarely define the accountability and authority in the working relationship. We never defined where people stand with each other, who can make the decision, who can make a task assignment and who is accountable for the output.

We take relationships for granted. We take for granted that people know how to behave with parents, with siblings, with teachers. We take for granted that people know how to behave as managers, but, in most cases, managers behave the same way they were treated by their managers.

There is a science to all this. It has to do with context. Effective managers are those who create the most effective context for people to work in. It is that unwritten set of rules that governs our behavior in the work that we do together. There is a science to context.

Organizational structure is context. It is the defined accountability and authority in our working relationships. Without it, people fill the void with all kinds of shenanigans. Not their fault. It is the responsibility of the manager (including the CEO) to set the context.

3 thoughts on “Without This, a Void Filled With Shenanigans

  1. Ash Patel

    In future posts, can you probe further into the concept of ‘defined relationships’ and how they would operate?

    Reply
  2. John Sarzoza Jr.

    More Management or Better Leadership….(Resulting in Better Management) ? I have found that with better leadership comes better management and everything else falls into place. Poor leadership will foster poor management. Fix the issue w/leadership (and management) and the “shenanigans” will go bye-bye. 🙂

    Reply
  3. Alan Sheppard

    I agree with the concept of correct context and clear roles and lines of authority. Sometimes however, through necessity of the business the normal lines of responsibility and authority have to flex. It is at that point when leadership is required. Its not just the ‘boss’ who needs to be the leader. There are leadership skills needed within all levels of the organisation and by creating a better leadership culture the management of the tasks happen from within rather than being passed down from ‘the manager’.

    Reply

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