The First Rule of Management: Be There
Dear Little Brother,
Someone put you in charge a group of people and gave you the title manager?
You have managed to work your way up to middle management in the jungle that is Corporate America.
Workin’ for The Man.
So it is probably about time that I mentioned just a few of the rules of management that I have seen work.
Sure, there are all kinds of gurus who may have their own rules garbage, but hey – since you know me personally, chances are you can filter what will work for you.
Rule #1 Of Management: Be There
The first rule of management is an absolute rule. Violate it and you will watch your objectives slip by and not get done right – if done at all. People will wander around mostly lost and in those millions of moments of decisions will do-whatever-they-want.
In the absence of a physical presence of a leader, almost without fail a leader will emerge who is physically there. And if someone else rises up to lead the group, guess what? No need for you.
Without a leader physically present every day, people generally will develop their own set of “work norms” that become the default expectations of what “good” work looks like. Guess what? Those performance metrics that the herd develops will usually be far, far lower than those that you need in order to meet your objectives.
Vacation? Yes. Take as much time off as you can and don’t let it impact the work. I think you will find that when you let the first rule of management burn itself permanently into your skillset you will find that you tend to sneak away for a long weekend every now and then, but the days of taking the month of July off are probably gone.
This one should be simple for you, but it isn’t simple for everyone. Some people don’t like to wake up every day and show up to the same place and do the same thing over and over.
But you do.
And I suspect you will be a a great manager.