I just came back from my futsal game after a long absence due to my work commitments. It was nice to see my old work colleagues and after futsal we went for dinner.
My friend and ex-colleague was lamenting to me about how the department has just gone from bad to worse. As he spoke, I sat there just listening and reflecting and reminiscing how things were much better off back in the day. I was quickly drawn back to the matter at hand, and I could see that the reason why things have gotten quite back at my former department was not so much that the work has gotten harder. It wasn’t also so much to do with the lack of resources, as my friend complained and concluded.
Rather I felt it was the individual itself. Having been a product of my former company, I knew the tacit operating culture and style in which they operated. More than ever, it was often a blamming game – ‘witch hunting’ as my friend monikered it. Superiors and managers were often out to find the culprit first, slay him and then tell him/her that if he doesn’t buck up, then his job will be gone.
As I sat down and pondered on the current management practice of my former management, my heart sank. I could really feel for my ex-colleagues in som ways. It wasn’t that they were incompetent. Rather it was simply that their superiors (who were once my own superiors) lacked people management skills.
It’s really disheartening to see unqualified people to hold positions which they’re not suited for. What’s even more disheartening, to see them get away with it and allow the lower rung employees to face the music. Now I’m sure the superiors don’t easily get away with it scott-free. But still, as management who are suppose to manage peope , shouldn’t they do more?
Managing people is more than just coordinating tasks and activities and ensuring that the job gets done. Part of ensuring the job gets done involves the human touch, and by that I don’t mean a pat on the shoulder reprimanding the employee that if he doesn’t peirform, he will lose his job. By human touch, I mean more on building the relationship and motivating the front line officers. I mean, spending less time on worrying about work, and more time on understanding the dysfunctions that are currently present.
Alas, I guess that’s why everyone thinks that these sorta things are too ‘softy’ and ‘fluffy’, but I’ve come to observe that part of the human performance is depnendent on the person’s attitude and feelings.
Properly manage that, and you can be sure that things will definitely improve. But then again, when will people wake up and realize that these’ fluffy’ issues matter a great deal in team performance?