Chris Croft
Tips of the Month – Archive

Managing People Tip 4


Who to delegate a task to

Find out about yourself

The Management Potato

Encouraging ideas


Something for your office wall

The unbroken chain

Are you a successful manager?

Monkey rules

What are managers really for?

Person in hole

Getting your hands dirty

Weekly meeting

Some awkward questions

The three Value Disciplines

Captain of the ship

Encouraging Ideas Some bosses think it's their job to think of all the ideas. In fact they may even feel threatened if other people come up with ideas that don't fit with their own. But the people on the front line invariably know more and often have better ideas than the people higher up so why try to do it all yourself? In order for the ideas to fit with the overall plan they need to know what's happening in the organisation as a whole and need to know what the longer term objectives are (mission, vision etc).Once they know this you can ask them for ideas and you might be surprised how good the ideas will be. You'll need systems to do this. And by a system I don't mean a suggestion box that is emptied once a year and the ideas sent back with "Rejected" written on them! The system might be to set up quality circles where groups are given time to work on problems(or maybe even to select which problem they think needs working on) It will also help to do plenty of Management By Wandering About to encourage communication- you can explain what you're trying to do, and the problems you're working on, and you can listen to the thoughts they are having. People who generate ideas need to be recognised - not necessarily with money, but with praise and encouragement. Probably the best way that ideas can be encouraged is by giving them the satisfaction of seeing their ideas put into practice. If you reject most of the ideas you get then they'll soon dry up - this means that you may have to implement some rather borderline ones! How many ideas do you get at the moment from your team?How many do you implement? 

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