What are some things I can do immediately, so that my organization’s leaders start to see me as a manager?

This depends very much on the current culture within the company.

At a top-down, command and control culture where employees are seen as unwilling hands that you have to tell exactly what to do, that is very different from a company where respect for people is paramount and where the employees are invited To think along with better ways to achieve the end result.

As a general rule I would say.Look at the way the CEO handles the people. Also look at the setting and behaviour of the management layers underneath. This will give you an indication about the expected behaviour of managers.

My real question would be: “Why do you want to get into a management position?” Is it because of the money, the status, the power?Or is it because you see that the way of directing is “not optimal”, and you think this can be better?

In the case of the second option, there are roughly two settings.

  1. You want to regulate the “tighter” and get more out of the employees by special numerical goal bonuses and more control.

Jack Welch is your friend! Although, just after his resignation as CEO, he immediately abolished his “system” of forced rankings (forced ranking) because it was so destructive….

  • You are aware that employees are not robots, but people with feelings, uncertainties and needs and you are convinced that employees perform better when they are treated respectfully and are given the opportunity to (in a methodical manner) Improve and optimise their own work.
  • In the first case, you will often get a willing ear to the existing management because they also do not know better and still believe in the “carrot and the Stick”.

    In The second case, it will be a difficult struggle where you will be confronted with a lot of opposition.However, it is a very valuable struggle that can give a lot of satisfaction.

    This second way of working has been propagated in Japan in the 50 ‘ years by W. Edwards Deming.That is one of the reasons why Japan in a very short time knew the image of “producer of cheap trash” to throw to an image of “developer and producer of excellent and innovative products at a very good price“.A struggle where the Americans, now 70 years later, still haven’t recovered from it (and if they continue, will never recover from it).

    Toyota uses the Deming philosophy as 70 years and their Toyota Production System (TPS, sometimes also called Thinking People System) is in the 80 ‘s years by the Americans copied as LEAN.

    Unfortunately, the most important fundamental component (the corporate culture, how do we deal with each other, what happens if someone makes a mistake) is not included.LEAN is the stripped down version of TPS, where (unfortunately) only the tools and the cost reduction are paramount.

    In Deming’s philosophy, cost reduction is a consequence, Not the goal, with traditionally LEAN that is unfortunately exactly reversed (and is even a prerequisite to succeed for your Black Belt).Because of this, the tools do not work as they are intended and actually only remain the option to work top-down again (which does not work properly!).

    If you want to know more, read my contributions on Quora (Dutch, English and German) or contact a LEAN coach (it’s not a “Belt”, because they are often trained in the “American” way) that can help you further.If you do not come out there, I can refer you.

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