Thursday, May 27, 2010

Tell your boss it is stupid. The Concept of the Corporation Chapter 2

How do you tell your boss that some policy or decision is stupid? The old joke says “Very carefully.” Drucker argues that large management meetings give junior supervisors a chance to fight back and gives a heart warming example of a policy on foremen that was rolled back. It is a good story and you should look at it if you are reading the book. I do think that it points to a specific issue.

Most managers are more cautious in the presence of their subordinates. It is hard to tell people “no” to their face. It is harder still when you have a lot of them. One of the big questions of management concerns how you get advice from your staff and subordinates and how do you get that advice in a form that is actually useful. A large meeting might be the forum, but it can also be the place where discipline breaks and you are faced with a collected force that carries no useful info and cannot be easily assuaged.

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