Manage Situations and not Processes

The more I work with new-gen-grown-up-the-ranks managers, I am getting convinced that the only biggest tool that these set of people can bet their life with is the age old tool of Situational Leadership. I mean, come to think of it. Its basic yet so profound that not everyone is similar. They have different tastes for food, coffee, tea, movies, books, even shirt sizes…similarly they respond to different styles of leadership. Yet, more and more managers (even many senior ones at that), do not understand this. They tend to focus on more Standard Operating Procedures, Processes, Bussiness Process Improvement, Brown Bag meetings, yet forget to go upto a subordinate and ask, “Hey how is it going?”. Its so simple yet ignored. Off late I have been a part of many so called “Attrition Reduction Meetings” and the more I attend these I come back feeling sad, angry, disheartened rather disgusted, gutted….as strong the negative emotions can be. Sitting there in the herd of people I feel bombarded by these so called strategies, which are purely wastage of Powerpoint slides. Its like trying to desparately make a simple engagement issue into a complex and complicated Organizational Calamity. Dr. Blanchard’s theory seem to have had little or no takers in this country where hierarchy, red tapism etc. seem to be the pretty much the way to go. Just this morning I had this incident. We were having this discussion with some of the new managers trying to explain to them that we will be starting a program to develop their ability to connect better with their respective teams and I encapsulated the steps to be taken. One of the attendees asked a simple question related to an issue at work and suggested a possible way out for us to understand what is needed. Before I could appreciate the sugestion, pat comes a reply from one of the Sr. Managers, “You have been called here to just listen to our plans…not suggest a strategy at this point..” @#$%^^& This is just the tip of the iceberg. I strongly feel that the management in India must understand that in these turbulent times when people are sitting on a thin precipise of patience, its all the more important to understand where the person stands, what th eperson requires and alter your leadership style accordingly. Doesnt harm at times if you have to sit there silently listening to the down pour of a person. Probably after the pour, things will iron out.


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