- Too turquoise workers in too beige company. Why nothing good will come of it
- "Learn and leave" vs "do not learn and will remain." Combining opposite approaches
- Awareness is like a double-edged sword. How not to lose a valuable employee who has fallen into the process of personal growth
- 3 principles that will prevent "grief from the mind" in any company
"Multiple knowledge does not teach the mind." When and for whom is it fair?
In this article, we will look at situations where over-investment in “intellectual capital” begins to harm business, and at the same time we will try to figure out how to find a middle ground.
The process of accumulating excess competencies primarily affects, of course, the “head” of the company. To make it clearer, just give an example.
The company of 70 people engaged in intellectual and not-so-business, was an advanced founder - he is also the general director. At 23, he graduated from university, and at 28 - an MBA. In the process of learning, the State Duma imbued with an indestructible idea that each process should be regulated and have a measurable result. The thought itself is correct! But how to implement it in a company where employees walk around the office in workouts and rubber slippers, look forward to Friday, and have never heard such words as “decomposition of goals”, “SMART”, etc. in life?
How how. There is nothing to think about. From tomorrow we will live in a new way!
HR, financial and other managers generated 15 pieces of regulations for all occasions. A system of meetings was established: first, the general - DG + all managers, then the individual - the leaders + their subordinates. Even if the subordinate is alone - still hold a meeting. With the protocol.
The tasks for the next period were put by the tops like this: "To conduct 14 interviews with candidates for the X position. To present 11 estimates of estimates for Project Y. To conduct 5 rounds of negotiations with company Z". The measurability is the same! Why exactly 14, 6 and 5 - the authors of the ideas did not comment.
What was with the results - I think, no need to explain.
It took exactly a week. Leaders gathered for a meeting in the same composition. They took beautifully printed reports and began to compare the fact with the plan. Ivan, why did you spend 4 rounds of negotiations instead of 5? Oh, you agreed before? And nothing that is written in the protocol - "5"? Maybe in the extra round you would get better conditions? So, what about HR? Closed position after 7 interviews? Why? If you had 14 interviews - you would surely find a better and cheaper candidate! In short, everything is clear. Nobody wants to work. We write tasks for the next week: "To conduct 5 rounds of negotiations ...".
So what do we see? Goals are dead. Responsible persons are identified. Quantitative criteria for achieving goals set. "Conversion of inputs to outputs" is regulated. The leaders of the directions are frantic and quietly frustrated, and the State Duma and the other owners are wondering why everything is moving so slowly and sadly.
And here is the MBA? I am deeply convinced that very much and where. Once in untrained minds, an extremely rationalistic complex of knowledge sprouted there in a completely sterile form. That is - without amendments to the practice of Russian management. And where will they come from, these amendments, if the listener has no managerial experience yet? In such cases, we have unrestrained adherence to the theory, turning into "experiments on living people." As well as the very knowledge that does not teach the mind and is not accompanied by the growth of emotional and social intelligence.
In fairness, I will say that the company described above lives and even grows. But thanks to, or in spite of, the Mwashi background of the founders - a big question.
First conclusion - always look at what age, with what experience and under what circumstances your colleague or potential employee received this or that education. One thing is the technical ability to gain knowledge, and another is the internal readiness to adequately adopt and apply them.
Too turquoise workers in too beige company. Why nothing good will come of it
Another aspect of knowledge overload and "best practices."
It so happens that the main issue for the future growth of a company is not “what to do?” or "how to do?", and "who will do all this?". I’m talking about a relatively new managerial trend of turquoise and Lean Production. The most progressive part of Russian companies turquoise covers more and more. Likely, process in something natural. Behind progressive companies, all the rest are drawn - I want everything to be like big ones. It is not necessary to be a cool specialist in spiral dynamics, to understand - to jump from the command and administrative system immediately to transcendental Ajail heights is unrealistic. But what effective manager will stop it? You can try.
I will illustrate the thought.
At one large enterprise with a long-standing manufacturing tradition, lean technologies were introduced in the form of an order and from a specific date. Tops, imbued with the thesis "lean is a philosophy," uttered top-level slogans and created the most abstract policies. It seems that everything was in line with the concept. But at some point — when it was finally necessary to evaluate the impact of the innovations — the practice began to look like this:
- Semyonitch! I called the main quality. Where, he says, mother-peremat, from the production of the initiative? Over the past week to eliminate muda * have not yet reported! Let's quickly make out, and so that from each shop at least three was!
- I give birth to them, or what? Who will invent something ?! Everyone plows without days off, my plan for the "forty-fifth item" is on fire, we don’t have time to mill!
- Well, someone who ?! Plant someone who is more free. The watchmaker is there ... or his secretary ... let him come up, print it out and run to me to register!
(* "Muda" (Jap.) - something consonant with the logic of the Russian language, a term denoting excessive practices and operations in production, the elimination of which will free up resources for more efficient work).
What is this story about? It is that even the most experienced managers (in this case, tops), guided by a suitable concept, can get an unintelligible result. For the reason that they took care of their own intellectual level, receiving diplomas from the Higher School of Economics, Moscow State University, Baumanki, Cambridge, but the level of their immediate subordinates remained the same with rare exceptions (the local university was a “staff forge”).
The second conclusion. An employee can be "retrained" relative to the level of a particular company. If you really want your company to be adzhaylovaya, turquoise, know how to live in the VUCA world and all that - not only learn yourself, but also explain to your people how to do it and, most importantly, why it is necessary. It is especially important not to miss the middle line of management: they are guides between the high concepts of the tops and the real life of people "in the fields."
And further. Let's ask ourselves a rhetorical question - who in companies usually becomes a source of all-destructive and unrestrained creativity, and who has to deal with the consequences? The greatest risks of becoming an innovator-delusional generator for an emotionally unstable employee who has “picked up on the tops” of something new, both in the area of soft and hard skills. This is not even due to the fact that an inspired colleague seeks to immediately apply everything that has been learned in life. It is necessary to apply, otherwise why study? The problem is that this is done without a deep understanding of the essence of innovation and without taking into account already established practices. Revolutionary ideas to throw in the masses well, and who will be responsible for the consequences?
I will not forget one of the resumes sent to the position of commercial director. "About myself: I turn psychos into malleable clay. I eliminate creative fires and know how to put out the burning stars."
This, as you understand, is an indispensable person for business. He is irreplaceable because in any team, in addition to geniuses, there must be sober skeptics. There must be, of course, creators and inspirers, and "integrators", and other types. Of course, it all depends on the leader: how he organizes the balance of power and how he will form his team.
It is important to remember that there are always factors that contribute to the beautiful picture of the "effective team" confusion. And one of the main destructors is the chaos of theories and concepts in the heads of employees.
If your team is random, without understanding the quality of the product and without any coherent strategy consumes business education, you will come to this chaos. As a result - to act in the same paradigm and speak the same language, you will gradually unlearn within the team.
And then what?
"Learn and leave" vs "do not learn and will remain." Combining opposite approaches
Everyone has heard a popular aphorism or a response to a typical objection when selling corporate training: "Do not be afraid that your employees will learn and leave - fear that they will not learn and will remain." Let's ask ourselves the question: is it always good to have an employee learn and stay?
Speaking frankly and without fig leaves - any training is really an investment. There are even hotheads that are taken to calculate ROI. So, we invested in an employee, got a return, invested more, got another return ... and so on, and it would seem that this process can endlessly develop a human resource.
Yes, with some reservations - maybe. If you follow the measure and choose the right direction of study. At the same time, you still need to understand that now people do not work in one company indefinitely - sooner or later everyone will leave, even the most loyal ones. But if you do not comply with the measure and the system, we will grow up just the worst option: an employee who learns will remain and, quite possibly, will become a bacilli carrier of “star disease”. The risk factors here are the same as with MBA:
- lack of real professional experience and
- insufficient maturity of personality.
Paradoxically, but a fact: a frequent syndrome in people who have studied too much and haphazardly, is not only star fever and high expectations from the employer, but also professional burnout. Rather, all these are links of one chain. We do not know what we want from an employee and how exactly we want to develop it, we teach everything in a row - and now it starts to seem to him that he is underpaid takes the wrong position his practical skills are underestimated. The frustration becomes chronic and a fig addressed to you gradually begins to form in the pocket of the worker.
What to do?
The first. Do not reinvent the wheel and use the principle of "10 20 70", which for some reason is not known to everyone. Let your upgrade consist of such parts: 10% of the time - training at seminars, trainings, MBA, etc., 20% - working with a mentor and 70% - independent work, practice. Then everyone will be happy, the worker will not tear himself away from the roots, and the production process will only benefit.
The second. Accept the idea of the transient nature of all things and accept the fact that sooner or later the moment of leaving your upgraded employee from the company will come. If you are his manager, your task is to make the moment not too early for the company and not too late for the employee. How to achieve this - I will not write here, too extensive subject.
Awareness is like a double-edged sword. How not to lose a valuable employee who has fallen into the process of personal growth
As we know, the best employees are those who constantly “sharpen a saw” and improve their ability to support the employer's business. A good employee does not need to push out with kicks for training - he himself is torn to him. Sooner or later, an illumination star comes to the understanding that knowledge and skills in his subject area are not enough for him. In the sense - it would be necessary to add what is called "soft skills". You can get them through all sorts of communication, time management, assertiveness, etc. As a rule, soft training involves, in addition to practicing the skill, some kind of intervention in the client’s mind. (Immediately I say - absolutely extreme options like “life springing”, etc., we don’t consider here.) The result or side effect of which, in turn, can be a jump in so-called awareness.
The employee begins to wonder - where does he spend the precious time of his life, whether it corresponds to his real goals, who he is, etc. It would seem - clearing the head will benefit if not the company, then the employee for sure. But I would argue.
Let's immediately deal with the benefits of the company. Variants of events: either the employee, overwhelmed with awareness, will immediately understand that he has nothing to do in such a company, or he will clearly define the date of leaving the company, or - the most fantastic option - will understand that his values fully coincide with the values of the company and he is ready to work here before retirement. In any case, the very idea of cooperation between the employee and the company will be questioned and rethought. Thus, the benefits to the company are more than relative. An absolute plus is that deliberately unmotivated people will leave.
Now for the staff. Ambush number 1 is that “enlightenment,” “breakthrough in results,” “awareness of the mission,” may not be the result of logical conclusions, but a purely emotional decision. In the end, a two or three-day soft skills training is not meant to “bring you to yourself.” He has other goals - namely, exactly those stated in the program: to teach the listener to manage time, emotions, tasks, etc. All the other conclusions that the listener will draw from the training, guided by his emotions, are on his conscience.
Ambush number 2. When a company says “awareness” - and even enters it in the list of corporate values - it means something different than an employee. No mental upgrade can be justified from a business point of view if it leads to a loss. Awareness in terms of a company is, in fact, a permanent readiness of an employee to give more than is formally required of him, and at the same time also to be 100% satisfied. I am by no means saying that this is bad! Indeed, in such a situation, I repeat, everyone is happy. But if the employee actually realized something was not right - for example, he accepted the necessity of his leaving the company as an indisputable fact - and at the same time he is an indispensable, promising, key employee, everything is more complicated. Holding such an employee is hellish work. And it may happen that it would be more profitable for the company to let the employee go to all four sides than to go into manipulation to put him to sleep with his awakened vigilance.
3 principles that will prevent "grief from the mind" in any company
First of all. A truly advanced company is one that pumps all functions and all categories of personnel evenly and systematically. Nothing good will come of it if, for example, you have generated an ingenious marketing strategy, and your sales department implements it by sending out “standard commercial offers” by fax. There can be no holacracy where managers think in beautifully soulless turquoise categories, and ordinary employees work from “fence to dinner” and no more. In the context of any single business, an over-educated employee will benefit no more than dropout.
Secondly. Even the most loyal employee, in the development of which the company invested megatons of bucks, will eventually exhaust its useful life. Burnout syndrome occurs, the eye is washed out, and so on. If this employee is you, show loyalty once again: think about how best to move to the adjacent sphere or at least to another company. And at the same time again capitalize the knowledge that you will carry with you.
Thirdly. There are values and goals of the company, and they can fully or partially coincide with your values and goals. You can completely separate them, but at one fine moment something from the outside (most likely, learning!) Will provoke a flash of awareness in you. And suddenly the truth about surplus value, wage labor and other mechanisms of relations with the employer will open up to you. So here. Be consistent in your development, accept all of the above described without evaluations and as a given. You deliberately chose the role of an employee? Then there is no reason for depression.
Total: know that it is not the redundant competencies of employees that are harmful to business, but the real impossibility to apply them. Have the strength to notice (and lead) the inevitable processes of the life cycle of employees and do not panic. Then everyone will have everything ok.