Manager’s Commitment

Greetings from St. Louis, MO.

I would like to welcome our new subscribers from Toronto. I was there last week in a series of workshops on Time Span and the research of Elliott Jaques.
Our next Leadership program begins Wednesday, April 30, 2008. For more information, visit
“Yes, but shouldn’t these people be reporting to me?” asked Ted.

“That depends. Functionally, their roles produce results you are interested in, but are you prepared to be their Manager?” I replied.

“I think so. I think they can report to me. I think I can hold them accountable for producing those results. I think I can check up on them to make sure they are working,” Ted proposed.

“That’s only the surface part of being a Manager.” I stopped to draw a picture. “Here you are, and these people, you believe, should report to you. But are you prepared to be their Manager?

“Your most important role, in the Manager relationship with these guys, is for you to bring value to their thinking and their work.” Ted stared at the simple picture of circles and lines.

“Are you bringing value to their thinking and their work by telling them that their reports are due on Friday and then reminding them Monday morning that their reports are late?”

Ted was still staring, but putting the pieces together. “Well, no, not when you put it that way.”

“Then, how, as their Manager, do you bring that value? And are you committed to bring that value? Are you willing to commit the time to bring that value?

“The answers to these questions will determine whether these people should report to you.” -TF

One thought on “Manager’s Commitment

  1. Philip R. Danforth

    I believe that as a manager, half of the function is to instill creativity and efficiency in the team members that report to you and in essence look to you for answers when they are stuck. Anyone can bark orders, but good managers explain the factors involved in accomplishing tasks, point out any time sensitivity issues and explain why they are important, and coach team members through the assigned tasks until they acquire the skills to loosen the rope a bit.

    P. Danforth


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