Directing/ Controlling

Chapter 7Pg’s 172-173  Lead With Love By Gerry Czarnecki  

No leader should assume issuing instructions will accomplish the goal. There must always be a way for the organization’s members to be directed. The traditional model calls for a “boss” who “tells” the staff what to do and engages in activities that assure the staff does the job. Some leaders will do this themselves; in other cases, they will have associates who do it for them. In the “self-directed” model, the staff or the unit will assume the responsibility to direct their own activities. For many years, management theories have suggested that self-directed teams are even more effective than the “one boss” model. Indeed, it is clear that if the team members are sufficiently motivated and disciplined to self-direct, then that approach will be remarkably effective and efficient, as well as satisfying for the staff. If the team does not come together, or if members do not have the commitment to achieve results, then that process will not be effective.

Whatever model for direction used, there must be some means by which the leader can track the staff’s ability to stay focused on the results required. Simply assigning tasks and walking away will eventually lead to inadequate performance. The leader can plan, organize, and direct effectively and still fail. For organizations to achieve the desired results, the leader must have a system of controls in place to monitor the staff’s ongoing performance. Even the most automated process requires a mechanism to assure the mechanical processes stay in control.

 Deming and Joseph Juran changed the course of Japanese (and U.S.) history when they convinced Japanese businesses that the way to achieve success was to institute statistical process controls on the manufacturing processes. These controls assured that when the process was “out of control limits” the leader would know immediately. #is knowledge would put the leader in a position to make the appropriate adjustments to assure the output would be within the appropriate tolerances. The same must apply for every leader’s organization. The leader must have process controls.

 These controls can be as simple as a daily report of the quantity of outputs completed or as complex as a detailed “dashboard” measuring all relevant parameters influencing the results. Whatever the mechanism, the leader must know how the organization is performing, and must know it soon enough to make “mid-course” adjustments. Waiting until the end of the time required to complete a project or achieve a goal is unacceptable. There must be intermediate measures available so the leader knows how the organization is progressing. Without these checkpoints along the way, the probability of success is slim. Once again, delegation without control is abrogation.

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