There’s no doubt about the fact that management practices as implemented in the modern day workplace have to be different to those which were commonplace a mere 5-10 years ago. In many respects managers and other figures of authority have to learn as they go along as well, so it can make for quite the challenge to implement the very necessary progressive management practices that will contribute to the success of your organization.
So where to start?
The good thing about the progressive management practices you need to implement is that they’ll pretty much lead you in the direction you have to implement them. If you can no longer afford to micro-manage certain employees for example, time-wise that is, then that shows you exactly where to start. Start with the employees – perhaps devise a short course in self-management which they’d have to attend, skilling them in the key decision-making processes which would have previously had them coming to you every five minutes to have you signing off on some or other consideration and its subsequent course of action.
That was perhaps a very specific example of where you’d have to look to get started with your implementation of progressive management practices. Looking at it from a broader point of view, it’s simply a matter of identifying those areas which can be addressed instantaneously, but they would have to have a lasting impact.
The example of training personnel to practice better decision-making comes up again as the epitome of addressing something in the moment which has the potential to make a lasting impact. It’s a case of you train them once and won’t have to do it again anytime in the near future, if ever.
Any leader requires the help of the people they’re leading to well, lead them. You cannot do it alone and you can have the experience of 20 men and women, but would still need at the very least the input of the people you’re leading. You cannot simply bark instructions – that always proves to be counterproductive in the end and you’ll only be shooting yourself in the foot.
Generally a leader needs many little under-study type sub-leaders to allocate main tasks to, who then in turn distribute those tasks amongst the working personnel. A leader can generally also pick up on who would make ideal under-study leaders of this sort, but often the best approach to take in this regard is solicit volunteer leaders. Ask anyone who is up to it to come forward and assume responsibility for the defined mini-leadership positions available.
Naturally some of these under-study leaders will be nominated by their fellow colleagues, but the important thing which is at play here is that of how leadership can come from the least expected sources. That employee who does just enough to keep from getting fired is perhaps just waiting for a position which will make them feel that much more valued in order to be more productive and perhaps even let their creativity flow.