Monday, March 22, 2010

Speaking of Personal Branding...

My mechanic's name is Otto.  How great is that?

Friday, March 19, 2010

Management by Raising Your Voice

Ever been yelled at?  Ever been yelled at by a boss?  It kinda sucks, doesn't it?

Over the course of my career, I've had, probably, about two dozen people who would have called me a supervisor.  I don't think I ever raised my voice to any of them.  Well, maybe a little, but I certainly have never yelled at an employee.

The other day, my entire team got yelled at.  Our boss wasn't happy with the results we were getting, and he wasn't pleased with our plans to improve our results.  He listened to us for quite a while, and, eventually, got fed up.  He blasted us.

This is a man who, generally, speaks at a rather quiet and relaxed manner.  He's generally content to allow others to lead the discussion, just throwing in some advice and guidance here and there.  He likes to motivate his team, but he is neither the fire-and-brimstone type preacher, nor an Anthony Robbins-esque motivational guru.  Quietly, he tries to instill confidence and comfort, allowing his team to go about their work self-assuredly.

But the other day, that demeanour was momentarily abandoned.  He was angry; he was pounding the table; and he was right.

Not everyone can get away with this sort of behaviour.  The reason he could is that he has, for years, earned our respect and treated us with respect.  His anger was neither malicious nor denigrating.  A manager who clearly articulates his team's expectations and affords them the necessary resources to meet those expectations has earned the right to raise his voice.

It can be tempting for managers to yell at their employees.  It's an easy tool to which to resort in an attempt to motivate.  However, there is a lot of work a manager must do before this can be effective.

You have to earn the right to yell at people.