What happened to the days of mentoring new employees? Have you mentored anyone? How about career development? How about being a model for your team? Somehow we seem to have strayed from what works.
Management is a privilege. It is also a burden. As a manager you have the opportunity to make a difference in people’s lives. To help them realize their potential. That is not a light load to carry. Leadership is not a characteristic that is present in all managers; some are purely functionaries from the French School of Governance. Nearly every politician in France came through the same higher education. Perhaps that explains a lot of how their government and businesses work. In America there is much more diversity in educational and cultural backgrounds.
Trust is one of the other hallmarks of a good leader and good manager. Lou Holtz had three things that were important to him.
- Do your best
- Do what is right
- Honor the Golden Rule
And he had additional thoughts for us.
- Can I trust you?
- Are you committed to excellence?
- Do you care about me?
There is a large body of books that can give us good insight. One of them to is “My Years with General Motors” by Alfred Sloan. He was probably the best business manager in the 20th Century. I wonder what he would think of the current management. It seems we have lost our way pushing more for short term gain and self-interest that the health of the work force and long term thinking. The time is now.