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Friday, July 18, 2008

Manager 2.0, Part IV

In this post, I will discuss the next three items(10-12) listed from the Manager 2.0 diagram listed in the Web 2.0 for Business post. Allow me to first express my gratitude to Kathy Sierra for creating the figure, referenced in Web 2.0 for Business post.

Item 10 states: "Continuous peer review ... official "appraisals" irrelevant due to constant communication." This is very similar to a the Deming principles. W. Edwards Deming, arguably the father of Total Quality Management used the notion of official appraisals only if performance was outside of an accepted band. The expectation of employees were clearly stated and understood. Continuous feedback was part of the process of achieving total quality, and thus, formal appraisals were not necessary.

Item 11 states: "A Hollywood model." This is contrasted with an hierarchical structure. I contend that there has to be some hierarchy, as there has to be a final say to issues, as well to provide direction. Examples of companies with looser hierarchical models are AES, Whole Foods Market, and Amazon.com.

Item 12 states: "Hiring based on curiosity, ability to learn, and passion." This is a statement I don't agree with. While these attributes are important, the demonstrated ability to do the job, or some aspect of a job is more important, in my opinion than curiosity or passion. Just because I have a passion for art doesn't mean that I have the talent or skill to become a great artist, or accountant, for that matter. A company must decide how much they are willing to invest in an employee who is curious, passionate, and able to learn to get them up to speed. Experience tells me that budget is very limited.

As I have mentioned throughout this series, many of these topics are have been discussed, though in a piecemeal fashion. Further, the points focus on filling not just the basic need for a paycheck, but rather more on the psychic benefits that keep employees motivated.

1 comment:

curiouscat said...

I discuss some of Deming's ideas on Performance Without Appraisal in the Curious Cat Management Improvement blog.

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