The Running Commentary

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Corporate Management challenges

(If you are wondering about the couch – don’t I just stuck in a picture…make yourself comfortable!)

I have this theory that the best corporate person that an organization can find for a managerial role is somebody that is 51% corporate and 49% entrepreneur.  What do I mean by this?

I hold a view that says that successful corporate requires innovative thinking (not an original thought I know) in order for them to succeed.  More importantly they need this thinking to be implemented in a passionate way. Perhaps more importantly though they need for the people, who implement, not to take the great ideas, and start their own, perhaps equally successful corporations.

Hence my observation around the split that makes up the perfect corporate manager. This breed though is difficult to find. Find them though you can….

It does though come with its own set of challenges. Typically these people are difficult to manage. They have a lot of ideas and may drift from one idea to the next.  They need the tools, both human and technological, to be able to deliver the results.  They need people who can support their ideas and implement them, freeing them to pursue the next idea.

They are able to remain employed for longer periods of time because they remain at the front of the queue, often confused with being in the lime-light.  They take the heat but can park it somewhere in the realms of their unconscious being, giving the illusion of being un-phased.  They succeed or fail….no middle ground for them. Very often they will reach the pinnacle of their businesses at a young age and then disappear from the company that got them there. They will move onto the next business and achieve success quickly again.

These people, as mentioned earlier, require good if not excellent support personnel.

Enter the general manager, the one who gets saddled with the implementation. Typically a “do-er”. They have great appetite for work, although they will never admit it. They are able to handle multiple tasks simultaneously and can manage people and resources, far better than their direct line. Their challenge comes in allowing those that report to them to do their job.  You see they battle with letting go, they know that they can do the job, and therefore hold very high standards.  Often they will jump into the breach “to help”, and end up doing the job of work themselves!  They die before 55 or take early retirement. They grumble a lot, but mostly to themselves or family around them. They hardly move on from the company they work for and get long service awards!

Then you have the vast majority, for whom nothing that the organization does is any good. They are always able to find better jobs, better pay and better working conditions.  Corporations expend millions of dollars on these folks, making their working life better. Entering competitions about how great the company is to work for.  

Don’t get me wrong I am not saying that the corporations must not spend the money, hell no! bring it on! Making the working environment a fun place to be is great, it will impact productivity, how though is up for debate (in my view anyway). 

This post is not about the vast majority…..

 It is about the management teams in place. I think that corporations need to focus on correctly identifying their key management strengths. If my contention is true and the perfect corporate manager is a 51%/49% split between corporate and entrepreneurial spirit, then ensuring that they can operate in this fashion is crucial for success.

Corporations that succeed will be the ones that can retain their managerial talent, by providing the correct environments for them to grow.  Fundamentally businesses need these people to deliver the ideas, the direction.  They need these managers to have the space to grow these ideas into even bigger visions.  Saddling them with administration is not the answer.

So this is a post about just that…

corporateentrepreneurIndividual SuccessmanagementmismanagementsuccessSuccession PlanningTime Managment

Mike • April 26, 2010


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