Modern Middle Manager
Primarily my musings on the practical application of technology and management principles at a financial services company.
The Invisible Manager

Wednesday, June 04, 2003  

After I typed the title above I realized it had to be the title of some book or article, it's just too catchy. A little googling came up with some articles on why face-to-face contact is essential for management, a more apt use of the term but no book (maybe I'll stake out my claim yet). The articles I brought up are uniformly bad...invisible managers are never seen, never around when you need them, etc. As a general rule of thumb I agree -- as a manager you can't disappear and never be around. You are a resource and guiding hand for your staff. However, a manager can be too ubiquitous, too often in the face of employees. My experience is that backing off and letting them finish their projects while knowing you're around the corner in your office if they need help is more effective. I make myself invisible during most of the workday to stay out of their way unless it sounds like they aren't making headway or request my help. Much like coaching a team, the team has to perform. You can draw up the plays and establish their goals but in the end you have to let them go and do the job.

All of which might just be a grand rationalization that justifies my blogging while my staff is working. Heh.

posted by Henry Jenkins | 6/04/2003 01:42:00 PM

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