In the television show “The Office” we are treated to the outrageous antics of a lunatic boss and his colorful cast of crazy employees. The show’s manager, Michael Scott, is the epitome of terrible leadership. He’s arrogant, lazy, incompetent and pathetic all at the same time. In one episode he fakes a termination of his completely competent receptionist Pam. In another he sends the whole office a sexually explicit email. He demeans, humiliates and offends every employee in the office at least three times a day, yet he somehow winds up getting our pity as well. The show is fiction and the characters are over-the-top in most cases, but through their humor we can learn several management lessons.
Michael is rarely honest. When faced with the consequences of his mistakes he is more likely to throw one of his own subordinates under the bus than take responsibility himself. When confronted with disturbing news (like the demise and subsequent bankruptcy of Dunder Mifflin) Michael doesn’t trust his employees. He keeps secrets and leaves his employees to wildly speculate on their future. Michael’s dishonesty makes Dunder Mifflin a depressing place to work and not unexpectedly the office’s productivity is always at rock bottom.
Honesty is always the best policy as a manager. If you take responsibility for your mistakes, your employees will respect you more. Employees want their manager to have the bravery to admit they are wrong. Have the strength of character to take responsibility. Managers always have secrets. That can’t be avoided, but whenever possible level with your employees. You will avoid all of the lost work time created by rumors and office water cooler chatter and they will respect you for it. If they can’t trust you, they can’t respect you and if they don’t respect you, you won’t get their best work.
Michael fancies himself as a gifted comedian, but nothing could be further from the truth. Despite having almost zero comic sensibility, Michael delivers an almost constant stream of bad jokes. The problem from a management perspective is that the humor is demeaning, sexist, and inappropriate and many times is someone else’s expense – hardly, a motivating management strategy. When his staff does succeed, Michael is more likely to offer a demeaning comment or joke than congratulations.
The workplace should be a comfortable place to be. It should be free of harassment and full of respect and understanding. When your employees feel comfortable and safe, they will be free to concentrate on their jobs. Always remember to praise your employees immediately when you see good work and never be shy to offer recognition. The best strategy is to always give credit, rather than take it. MK sales bag uk