Pick two!

Tell me two things, two lines you would like to use to describe the population group that you handle. Are they eccentric, high maintenance, transparent, frank or just poor people managers? One department that I take care of is ‘Product Lifecycle Management’.

I am going to re-narrate another interesting bit of a conversation I had with my department head who in turn heard this from the Business Partner of another PLM division. He asked the BPHR to list two features of his division.

He came up with

a)      Bad people Managers

b)      Love to talk about their work/ take great pride in what they do

I when asked the same came up with relatively poorly articulated points:

a)      Eccentric, hard to please

b)      Innovative

I try and console myself with the fact that at least the second bit could match. I was then asked on what I had done about these two points that I’d mentioned. How did I deal with it? Or rather, what did I do to capitalize on these traits/features?

My HR peer had done the following:

–          Because he knew that they were poor people managers, he did not strive to make them ‘great’ people managers. He identified their weakness and made a small handbook with the basics to being a good people manager. If they were even halfway on the path to great, it was good enough. Because it was so difficult for them, his aim remained in making it simple for them.

–          Because they loved what they did, he encouraged them to talk about it, to publish newsletters, to give talks in other institutes/colleges, to teach and to innovate. All of this became part of their KRA’s which made them love their time at the office even more.

So here is what you should do today. Identify two things from your unit and see how you can capitalize them. If you’ve done this, go ahead and pick two more.


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