Hello everyone, I think that the "air-traffic-controllers-asleep" issue has some interesting lessons for us in the area of management. Here is what I mean. One of the workshops I conduct includes a section devoted to the topic of “how to develop your team culture”. That is, what can a manager do to develop and propagate the culture that the manager wants to “install” into the organization? Now for many managers the culture they think … [Read more...] about #95 The Air Traffic Controllers Were Not Managed!
Communication for Engineers
"Context-Static questionnaires don't work." Hello everyone! I was teaching a management class at the University of California, Santa Barbara, this last Friday. I was talking to the class about the way in which each of us is "programmed" to behave in certain ways. I gave the students a questionnaire and one of the categories surveyed by the questionnaire had to do with being oriented toward "details" or toward "big picture". Those people … [Read more...] about #76 Context and Communication
"Updating in real time." Hello everyone! I received a comment from Dorothy McKinney regarding my last blog in which I didn't say a lot of nice things about Myers-Briggs, DiSC, Enneagram, and other "systems" that purport to tell us who we are and how to manage others. (By the way, I really appreciate it when people make comments… I like the dialog and we all learn from each other.) Dorothy's comments centered on the usefulness of these … [Read more...] about #74 I Have A Solution!
"Forget generations X, Y, and Z." Hello everyone! There is no doubt that we can put "groups" of people into certain "groups". The simplest group, of course, is Homo sapiens. We are all part of that group. Then there are the groups of men and women. We can go further, such as male child, female child, female adult, male adult. In business management these distinctions are less useful and even less acceptable than the Myers-Briggs … [Read more...] about #73 Generational Profiling
What to do when you don’t have the answer. Hello everyone! Just say No or is it I don't know? How often do you say, "I don't know?" How often do you say, "I forgot to do that?" How often do you say, "Sorry, I didn't do it?" To most engineers, scientists, and technical professionals these are deadly statements. No self-respecting engineer wants to say, "Oh, I forgot to do that". And no self-respecting engineer wants to say, "I … [Read more...] about #64 Just Say No or Is It I Don’t Know?
A direct report wants to manage her manager Hello everyone! Today I was conducting some business. The young woman who was assisting me was very competent with her company's products, services, and she was great with customers, me. It was clear she was not in a "selling mode". Her interest was in providing me with service and products that suited my needs. During our conversation she asked me what I did for a living. I told her that I … [Read more...] about #56 Once More With Micromanagement