HomerJ wrote: ↑Thu Sep 17, 2020 12:33 pm
AZAttorney11 wrote: ↑Wed Sep 16, 2020 8:47 pm
Want to make a lot of money in the corporate world? Figure out how to be an excellent leader of people. Lots of posters in this thread are talking about their credentials, IQ, technical skills, and experience, but no mention of "EQ" or how they build and develop relationships with key stakeholders.
As a worker bee, should it be easy to spot someone who is an "excellent leader of people"?
I mean, shouldn't the people being led notice the difference between excellent leaders and non-excellent leaders?
There are a lot more adequate leaders than good leaders and a lot of not-quite-adequate leaders too.
There really aren't enough excellent leaders to go around. Which is one reason that excellent managers
get paid more than excellent technical folks. There are many more excellent technical folks.
The Peter Principle ("People rise to the level of their own incompetence") applies here, too, as does the
fact that very few people move INTO management and realize that there are a whole 'nuther set of
learnable skills that they need to master.
But also there are different management/leadership styles and strategies and finding a match between
the leaders and the led is important.
Which gives me the opportunity to tell a funny story about myself and my boss.
My group is kinda a staff group. We are not responsible for any products. But we DO develop and
evaluate technologies for use by other groups and part of what we have to do is to persuade the other
groups to adopt the technologies and/or solutions that we are pushing.
We've had enough (high visibility, high impact) successes in the past [one thing that we developed before
handing off is responsible for around $1 billion in revenue as an example] that we get listened to, but we still
need to persuade on a case-by-case basis.
In addition, because we are technology focused, part of our job is coordinating other groups --- sometimes two
groups won't realize that they are solving similar problems or evaluating the same technologies.
One of our product groups was developing a new product and my boss was not very happy about this.
He thought that it would be done poorly, catch on, and then we'd be stuck with it AND THE UNDERLYING
TECHNOLOGY THAT THEY SELECTED.
I knew (and liked!) the project manager leading the effort in the other group.
I *ALSO* knew that *my* group was working on some related technology development.
What *I* mostly wanted from the two groups (mine and the other one) was that we not ACCIDENTALLY pick
competing technologies. No point in one group to get good at Hondas and the other to get good at Toyotas
if both groups could use either without any problems. Basically, if we were going to diverge, I wanted it
to be intentional and not accidental. I spent some time keeping the two project managers talking to
each other about this.
At a weekly staff meeting the following conversation occurred:
Boss: Does anyone know what Nxxx is up to?
Me: Yes. I do.
Boss: How related are their technology choices to what we are doing?
Me: I've had Nxxx and Vxxx talking to each other. The technology stacks should be the same, so we shouldn't get stuck with something we don't want. It is under control.
Boss: Why isn't this in your weekly status report?
Me: Because you told me not to do it!
... pause ...
Boss: Next time put it in your status report.
This exchange is only a *little* bit surprising in my group. My boss expects a LOT of autonomy out of his reports (including his reports occasionally ignoring what he has told them). With other groups this would be a problem. And there are a lot of perfectly competent individual contributors that would fit poorly in our group.