Marcus Buckingham told us in First Break All the Rules that the manager — not pay, benefits, perks, or a charismatic corporate leader — was the critical player in building a strong workplace. The manager, he said, was the key.
I recently read a story (maybe you could call it a confession) written by a leader I have closely studied for more than 25 years. By any measure, his organization would be considered successful, and many leaders ask for advice from this leader.
So what did he confess? Based on some feedback, he decided to retain a consulting firm to determine his staff’s job satisfaction. He was shocked, almost derailed, and spent many sleepless nights as he read the responses from his team — more than one team member said things like, “My supervisor is crazy.” By crazy, they meant controlling, inattentive, uninspiring, uncaring or, worse yet, mean-spirited.
One of his conclusions was, “People join organizations, but they leave managers.”
Do you really know how you’re viewed by your team members? Do you really know how they feel about your company? How do you know? As you have experienced significant growth, have your team members suffered?
p.s. Over several years, this leader took the input from his team seriously and made changes, including removing some of the supervisors/bosses. After reviewing the results of the company’s most recent independently administered satisfaction survey, their consulting firm labeled the company “elite” — they have made dramatic improvements since the first survey, and the environment is much more positive than it used to be.