Thursday, January 28, 2016

The focused boss

In the present day world, we struggle to provide undivided attention to the task assigned to us. We have countless distractions while we strive to accomplish our tasks and goals. There are Outlook, Lync, Yammer and numerous other activities that take away our attention. Hence, it becomes difficult to focus. While technology has made us closer and accessible on one hand, it also made us less productive and sadder on the contrary. Because of this reason, the mention of a focused boss caught my attention.

The focused boss is a desirable thing to happen to any one of us. But there are variants of this species. My friend's story is related to a one of the variant. Before I start my tale, let me tell you commonly accepted norm related to our working lives. The word of the boss may not be equivalent to the Bible but in the overall scheme of things, it is almost up there. So my friend story starts with a confrontation between the focused boss and his employee. The employee was in a common area when the focused boss came out of his cabin to confront him. The focused boss wanted to obtain an update on the employee's action plan from the previous meeting to contain a potentially explosive situation.

Focused Boss: *without wasting time* Did you call the client?

Employee: *respectfully* No, I didn't have to. I managed the situation.

Focused Boss: *voice raising a couple of notches* Did you call the client?

Employee: *very respectfully* No, I didn't. Before that, I resolved the issue and hence was sure it would not flare up.

Focused Boss: *emphatically* Call the client.

The conversation didn't end there. The employee wanted to wait further before calling the client as he didn't have sufficient information. But I want to draw your attention back to the conversation. You may have realized why I refer to the person as focused boss. He has kept his focus on the call with the client but ignored all other aspects of the conversation. What kind of management style is good? Is it important to be transactional if your underlings can take charge and manage the situation? Tell me what you think.

Tags: Musings, Boss, Style

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