Management is not for Everyone | An article written by Tulsa staffing recruiter Ginny Morgan with Trinity Employment Specialists
In his July 2012 article for www.forbes.com entitled ‘The End of Middle Managers (And Why They’ll Never Be Missed)’, David K Williams makes the case for more leaders in the workplace and not managers. He states it is possible to keep a company’s organizational structure flat and not to have levels upon levels of managers. This in essence keeps the playing field level. It gives everyone a chance to play by giving them the opportunity to lead according to their expertise and knowledge base. Each employee is a necessary team member and is recognized for his/her talents and how they contribute to the team.
It sounds like a fairy tale work place, but it is possible to achieve this type of arrangement within a company. It can be difficult to break the traditional workplace mentality of manager/subordinate to a complete shift of thinking toward a peer/peer structure. I have found this type of organizational structure works best with employees who are a bit more seasoned in their career path. Someone who is done climbing the corporate ladder and is looking for a reputable, stable, fun place to work where their talents and experience can be used to the fullest are the best recruits. These employees are more prone to be team players – willing to share in the responsibility for the good of the company. Most have been managers in their fields for a time and for one reason or another would prefer to not have the stress level associated with this title. However, they have usually developed great leadership skills.
Leadership skills are certainly something every company can benefit from in an employee. All too often, bosses see these leadership skills and automatically assume they would be a good manger, team lead or administrator and stick them in that role. Good communication or an ability to organize tasks well does not always translate into a stellar manager. I think many of us can relate to a boss who is excellent in one area but severely lacking in many others. It creates an ineffective environment of frustration and can lead to gossip, insubordination and fruitless company. Not every person with good leadership abilities should be a manager, but they can always step up within a business to be a champion of the organizations values and support future goals.
Recruiting the right employees with a team work minded mentality is the key to success of this organizational structure. Any good recruiter should always look for a candidate’s longevity in a career. This not only shows dedication but also demonstrates compatibility working with others in a group. Another resume indicator is the description of work associated with each position held. For instance, a person with a strong collaboration mentality will highlight their work within groups, how they interacted with others, communication and responsibilities dealing with coworkers. When interviewing these candidates it is important to ask relational and open end behavioral questions. A list of these can be found at here. It is also paramount to watch the interaction of the candidate with current employees and get feedback from these employees. After all, they will be working closely with each other hopefully for a very long time.
Leadership is defined as “a process of social influence in which one person can enlist the aid and support of others in the accomplishment of a common task” by www.wikipedia.org. This is a great definition because it encompasses the social aspect of leadership. Leadership is not just a static concept, but it is a fluid theory. Forming a structure around this moving target can be difficult, but it is a great way to organize a company. Focusing on leaders in the workplace instead of levels of managers and administrators can build not only the profitability of a business but also its reputation for excellence, quality, teamwork, and innovation.