Saturday, December 11, 2010

Management = Learning + Teaching

I always look up to my boss or quickly find somewhere else to work.  You don't grow if you don't learn and I've always found my boss to be a wonderful learning resource.  That perspective is simply common sense.  Convention wisdom says you learn from someone who has more experience and more breadth of responsibility.

In the same vein, I want my direct reports to learn from me.  They can learn by example (sometimes what to do ... sometimes what not to do), or by mentoring, or by coaching.  This flow of knowledge and skill in theory helps the organization to grow its intellectual capital.  Intellectual capital is an asset whose real value typically exceeds any physical asset in knowledge-based organization.

But the real joy is when the knowledge flow goes both ways.  I have a leadership team where I think I learn more from them than I learn from anyone else. Management is about teaching to staff and learning from staff.  The traditional, conventional view of managers having all the experience and knowledge just doesn't make sense.

Most managerial skills are ephemeral.  Our work environment changes continuously, whether we are aware of it or not.  You have to learn from every possible source.  Why not your own staff?


1 comment:

  1. Great post Mark. I agree 100%!! I hope my team feels the same way about me as yours does about you! Cheers! Leo