The unemployed perfect manager
Posted on June 24, 2009 by Tom
Sometimes the greatest insights come from places you really don’t expect it. Not that this one will blow your mind away or will have a TED-spinoff. It’s just that sometimes people are in such a hurry to get the job done that they don’t think about what they already know. Even if you’re only 24, you have tons of experience!
The great thing about these moments is that you have to be aware that they can happen at anytime, at any place. You don’t have to go to every networking event, speak to every industry insider you know or have weekly brainstormsessions. Just keeping your eyes and ears (!) is enough. The place, a hotellounge in Amsterdam. The foods and beveragemanager said to one of his waiters something like: “When will you finally get how we work around here?”
He was frustrated, obviously since he was screaming rather loud, but he wasn’t angry at the employee. It’s a small difference but it’s there. He was frustrated that he failed to put the right guy in the right spot. Nothing more. The employee looked like he was trying, he wasn’t lazy, he listened, was friendly and frankly made one of the best mojito’s I’ve tasted. But his manager has another vision of what should be in his mind.
The best manager is one that doesn’t do anything! Or to be more specific, one that doesn’t have to do anything. It’s the perfect picture, find the right people to do the job. When that moment comes, you don’t have to do anything anymore, you’re done. In fact the perfect manager is probably one that makes himself obsolete. Maybe that explains the success of consultants or interim managers these days.