Brad Sugars Talks About Management vs. Leadership
Today we’re learning about management vs. leadership. I want to say that leadership is one of the biggest problems in business.. I want to say that leadership is one of the biggest problems in business. Not because leadership is bad, but because there is a lack of management leading to the leadership. Let me explain that for you. Ultimately leadership is something that everyone is studying…they’ve read the books, they’ve been to the seminars…if you go on to Amazon, or go into any book store, there’s a massive segment of books on leadership. There’s very few books on management.
If we think back, the last best selling book on management was probably the One Minute Manager back in either the late 70’s I think it was or early 80’s. We take a look at why management has disappeared and how management a lack of it….actually first let’s define what the two of them are.
Management is about creating competent productive people, management is about productive people that have a level of competence, they know what they’re doing, they know how they are doing their job. If a company has people that don’t know what they’re doing, there’s a lack of competency, there’s a lack of productivity…that’s a management problem. Now flip that over, leadership is about creating passion and focused people. If the people in the organization lack passion, and that motivation to do their job and they’re not focused on where they need to be going, then that’s a leadership issue. Let’s define the two separately.
The challenge that faces most business owners today is that business has been really well built from a leadership perspective, but because of the lack of management, we’ve got people that aren’t good at their job and they’re not that productive, but we’re getting them passionate and excited, and we’re not getting the results we want to get.
How do we get the results we want to get in business? It’s not actually that complex, we’ve gotta have good management, and we’ve gotta have good leadership. Does every person need to be both? Not necessarily, but there are definite management traits that we want to be built into every leader, and there’s definite leader traits that we want built into every manager. I suggest that we learn both key skill sets so that we can actually do this. Let’s look at most companies today, if someone gets promoted to be a manager in a company, what level of training do they get as management training? In this day and age, the amount of management training or the lack of management training for most people out there business, is extraordinarily high. Why is it that people don’t get management training in companies? I think that management got a bad rap somewhere in the 90’s or early 2000’s where people said “Well you don’t need to MANAGE your people, you need to LEAD them” It was kinda like leadership said management was a bad thing. Hang on a second, we’ve gotta have competent productive people, if we want to get the job done in any business. So we do need to learn management skills, we need to understand what those management skills are and how they work. Then we need to understand leadership as well.
Today we’re going to focus on management vs. leadership. Management is where we start though because, if we see negative behaviors in an organization, normally it’s a lack of management. If I see things like, people in denial about how good they are, they think they’re better than they are. Or their lack of responsibility, these people are blaming others, there’s no team cohesiveness. A lot of these things are based around lack of a management, for want of a better term. I know sometimes we say it’s bad management, the reality is that some people are quite lazy managers. They give someone a task and then they don’t even agree on a time frame, a schedule, or a plan to get it done by. Let’s take a look at how we become good managers, as well as how we operate as good leaders.
The 5 Main Points I want to talk about management today…Number 1; they know their job. Do they actually know what their job is. If you were to sit down with your top 10 employees and say to them “Listen write a list of what it is you think your job is. Write down the top 5…the top 10 things you think your job is. At the same time you’re writing your list of what you think their job is. Most employees don’t actually know what is required of them. Their job description is too vague, and there’s no reality around what they’re doing, or why they’re doing it. If I looked to the basics of the start of management, it starts with a really good job descriptions where people know what is expected of them, know how they’re supposed to do it, and know why they’re supposed to do it.
For a majority of employment positions, I want to use checklists and systemization. Someone said to me the other week “Brad, my staff aren’t doing a great job…so show me the checklist they’re supposed to follow” of course there’s no checklist for them to follow, so how can they be doing a good job. Give your people checklists, give them systems so that they can be competent at the job that they’re doing, and get actual results for you in the business. If you want good management, you’ll need people to know what their job is, what they’re expected to do, at what level they’re expected to do it, what is the performance standard for that job, the time frame it should be done in, and an agreed time.
When you’re a manager and you give someone a job, and you don’t agree a timeframe of when they need to finish that job, that’s just lazy management. I know some people say “…but Brad that’s like micro-managing.” Yes! Some employees need micro-managing until you’ve built their competence, until you’ve built their ability to do it. You won’t have to do it forever, but this is part of the training or the coaching, or the managing, and mentoring of these people so they actually become good at their job, and they actually become productive at their job. Firstly make sure they know what their job is, give them a checklist, give them a great job description, agree what their job is, and do that.
Secondly, and I believe this is something that every person in every business should do, whether you’re the owner or the janitor. You should have a daily list at the end of every single day of what you need to achieve the next day. If you want higher productivity out of your people, literally make sure before they leave the office, before they leave the warehouse, wherever they work…they’ve written a list of what needs to be done, and what needs to be achieved tomorrow. If you’re NOT doing that you’re productivity will be much lower. We’ve found about a 30% increase in productivity in employees when we start doing that. As a manager, you can see that list…you can get them to leave it on your desk, or get them to hang it on their locker, or on their clipboard. As a manager you can take a look at that list. The daily lists is one thing, and of course you want them to learn how to prioritize, you want to make sure that they put it in a timeframe, and they diarize it for the next day. At least start with the list…
Think about it this way. The last time you went away for a period of time whether it was a holiday, vacation, whatever it was…you made a list of what needed to be done before you went away…you got the list done, and hey “presto” sort of thing. Checklists work very well as part of management, and if you want to manage people better definitely have then knowing their job, but also know what you’re doing with them.
That daily list then becomes a weekly list, why do we want that to become a weekly list? Very simply put, we’re going to have two meetings with all of our employees. I want you to get away from being a reactive manager, and start learning how to be a proactive manager. Reactive management started with that whole open door policy “Oh my door is always open, you can always come and ask me questions.” What ends up happening is they end up coming at any time of the day, and asking you stupid little questions, and you give them an answer. Now answering them is one of the biggest things that most managers have to stop. If you’re gonna train someone to do something, you’ve gonna stop answering them, and you’ve gotta start asking them questions. Questions are a major part of the tools of a good manager, so a good manager will ask their employee questions, and get the answer from the employee because it makes them THINK. It makes them understand what they need to do, and that’s really a lot of what you need to be working on, is making sure those employees know their job, they know what they are doing, but making certain they’re putting into a checklist so they can follow it.
On a Friday we also get our employees to do a list of what has to be done the next week, and here’s where the two meetings come in. One meeting is a team meeting. It’s with you and your direct reports, and most people have 8 direct reports. More than that it’s too hard, you spend most of your time managing. Less than that, you’re not managing enough people to warrant being paid as a manager I guess. On the Monday morning, you have the WIP meeting with your people, the work in progress. If you’ve got 8 people on your team, all of them sit around your desk, you’ve got the list from Friday, you go through everyone’s list of what needs to be achieved through the week, and you communicate. Part of management, part of confidence, part of building productive people, is knowing where they fit in in the scheme of things.
If you’re having a talk with people and Mary’s got a job, and Bob and Mary have to work together, then in that Monday morning meeting you’re communicating that with them. You’re setting time frames, you’re setting standards on which jobs will be done. You’re making good notes on theirs, so that you as their manager can help manage them doing those productive tasks. When you first start doing that meeting, it’ll probably take you an hour to two hours. When you get good at it, it’ll probably take you about 35 to 40 minutes with your direct reports, once they’re learned how to do it and once you’ve learned how to do it.
The second meeting you’re going to have every employee each week is a one on one meeting usually done a on a Thursday. Again when you first start it’ll probably take an hour, eventually you’ll probably get down to 20 minutes. There’s 3 things you’re gonna talk about in that meeting, number 1 their list. You’re gonna go over their projects, what they’re working on , the tasks they’re doing, everything they’re making happen. Then the second thing you’re gonna talk about in that meeting, is you’re actually gonna sit down with them and go over their key performance indicators.
I’ll get to…well let’s deal with that right now. The 3rd major thing of management is measurement. I just want to touch on that, and I’ll get back to it in a minute. You measure two things with employees, number 1 their activities and number 2 their performance. You have key activity indicators, what is their activity that they must do every day, to whatever standard. Then you have key performance indicators which is the result of those activities. That’s what we should be looking at, we call it 6×6 in our organization where we have 6 activities, and 6 performances, that we measure with each person. That’s the second thing you’re gonna talk about in that Thursday meeting. I’ll come back to the measurement in a moment, so you don’t have to panic that I haven’t given you enough detail on that one.
The 3rd thing you need to talk about during that meeting is where they’re at with what they’re doing. Let’s say during the week, they messed something up. You don’t try and coach them the moment they messed it up. You don’t try and educate them in the moment they’ve messed it up. In the moment they messed it up, all you want to do is get it fixed, and get it to the customer or get it fixed, and get it completed. Instead of when something goes wrong, asking the stupid question of “Why did this go wrong” to which you can only get people giving you excuses or blaming someone else, we ask questions along the lines of “What are the 3 things we need to do to get this out to the customer in the next 10 minutes?” There’s 3 parts to that question; there’s a time frame (the next 10 minutes), there’s a detail orientation (what are the 3 things), and it’s forward moving, it’s not asking what went wrong…it’s asking hey what are we gonna do to get it to the customer. It’s that type of management questioning. This is the type of basic management training that people just don’t get anymore, and this is one of the killers of management or lack of management, is that people aren’t trained in this stuff. If they’re not trained in it, it’s very difficult for them to get results. By the way gang, thanks for all the likes and the loves that are coming across the screen, if you’re enjoying it, please do share it with your friends.
Now in that meeting where it’s one on one, if they did have a problem during the week, you sit down with them in the meeting and you ask them about it. Not at the exact moment it went wrong, you ask them about it in the meeting. Is this a training issue, is there a system that’s missing, or is it just you being stupid and not thinking about what was going on? Most cases, they’ll be happy to admit that they just made a mistake in that environment. If you brought it up when they first did it, they’re just not gonna be happy about that.
So make sure they know their job, make sure you got daily lists weekly lists, so you can have your meeting every Monday with the team and every Thursday individually, so you can managing them. Now here’s the challenge with that Thursday meeting; stop answering all their questions during the week…STOP IT. When people come to you and ask you a question say “Great bring it to the meeting!” If someone emails you with an new idea “Great bring it to the meeting.” You’ve gotta get to the point where you get them to bring it to the meeting. Now sometimes there are things they ask you, that do need an urgent answer. Again, stop answering them, start using questions. If someone asks “Should we do this?” You say “Well, what do you think? What would be the benefits of doing this? What would be the benefits of doing that?” You’ve gotta lead them to make a good decision. I know it’s hard in the beginning, because it’d be easier for you to just give them the answer. That’s the problem with giving them the answer, you build someone who’s entirely reliant on you, as a manager and every time they need something, they keep coming to you. So you’re not building them as a person…you’ve got to coach them and educate them by using questions so they become better at their job, not worse at their job. So make sure that’s a part of what you do.
Next thing we need to understand if we’re going to get to high performance. Remember Management is competent productive people. Training, what training are you doing for your employees? If you want them to do a better job you’ve got to train them. You don’t see a sport team expecting them to do better the next week without training them. When things go wrong, they do training, they don’t yell at them, they do training with them. So what training is lacking with your employees? Everyone of them is different, remember this. I learned this great lesson from a gentleman named Wayne Bennett. Wayne Bennett is probably one of the best Football coaches I’ve ever met. He coaches rugby league down in Australia where I’m originally from. Wayne said something to me one day he said “Brad, you don’t coach a team, you coach individuals.” Remember this, part of management is that every single individual in your team needs a different form of management. So if you haven’t done profiling, please speak with your local ActionCOACH and ask them about how you can do profiling so you can understand their behaviour analysis. Usually for management, we use the DISC profiling tool. Again chat with your ActionCOACH, they’ve got a whole bunch of profiling tools that you can use and learn from.
Now why do we do that? We want to build a training program for each employee to make them more competent at their job, to make them better at their job. If they’re not more competent at their job, you can’t expect better results If you want an employee to do better, you’ve got to train them better, they’ve got to learn their job better, so they can actually get the performance levels, they want to get. You’ve got to always remember that you don’t build your business, your employees do. Your job as the owner is to build the people that build the business. If you build the people they build the business.
Back to management again, we’ve got to make sure we know what their job is, we’ve got to make sure we’re managing them properly and to do that we need to have checklists , lists of what they’re doing each day, lists of what they’re doing each week. We also need to have a plan with these people. The plan is something that they can all look at and say “OK, this is where we’re going.” Now we’re moving more into leadership strategies. Competency and productivity is one thing, but we now need to move into more leadership strategies, so that we can actually get them more focused. Again the two areas of leadership, passion and focused people.
Do training, make sure they know their job, measure the results they want to get, build the person consistently. Stop being this superhero. This one kills me, business owners who want to play superhero in their business. Every Time your employee makes a mistake, you go in and fix it for them. They don’t learn anything new, they keep making mistake, you keep having to be there, and you’re tied to the business. Put it this way; let’s imagine your child is 4 or 5 years old, and they’re learning to tie their shoelaces. The first few times they’re learning to tie them is extraordinarily painful. I know I have 4 kids. You’re watching them and you’re sitting there thinking “OK I could do this in about 10 seconds flat and it’s taking us 7 minutes already, and we’re running late.” Stop tying your employees shoelaces for them. The reason your kids can tie your shoelaces one day you let them do it themselves, and therefor you learn the process. So if you’re playing superhero in your business, STOP IT. If you’re making stupid claims like, you can’t get good people, or no one can do it as good as me, or “if you want the job done right you’ve gotta do it yourself”, you suffer from superhero-itis. Stop doing that. That one kills businesses. You’ve gotta build the people so they build the business. If you want them to do a better job, train them to do a better job. Manage them so they do a better job. When you give them a task agree a time frame, agree a level of performance that needs to be done on this thing.
Let’s move over to the leadership side of it. I think that leadership side of what we’re looking at is very important. Again gang, thanks so much for all the likes and loves, and comments that you’re leaving, really appreciate. If you can make a comment of what you’re learning the most I think that’s probably a big thing. What is your biggest lesson out of this is probably one of the best comments you could leave, to help everyone else with their learning, especially everyone joining us later on this.
Let’s take a look at leadership. Again, without management, we don’t remove the negative behaviors. If you don’t have management negative behaviors creep in. Lack of productivity, lack of competency creeps in, and therefor leadership doesn’t work. No matter how good of a leader you are, if you got incompetent and nonproductive people, you can’t lead them to passion and focus.
Number 1 job of a leader, communication. Communicate, communicate, communicate. You’ve gotta communicate to your team what’s happening, when it’s happening, how it’s happening. You’ve gotta always be in communication mode as the leader. Videos like what I’m doing here on live are phenomenal of what you can use with your employees. Make sure you using them, do a newsletter to your team, but communicate consistently and persistently with your team. That is the job of a leader. If you communicate more, they’re focused on where they need to be. It’s hard to keep looking down if someone’s always pointing up. It’s hard to keep them focused if you don’t communicate more regularly with your people with what it is and how it works.
Second thing, vision. Vision is very much a big part of it. If you’re gonna communicate something the vision or mission of the company where you’re going, the direction of the company. Let’s touch on vision for a second. If your vision of the company is purely how much money you’re going to make, that is not a vision my friends. None of your employees get excited about you making an extra million bucks this year. The vision has to be something where everybody wins. It’s gotta be a common goal. It’s gotta be a core where everyone that’s part of it wins. To give you an example, at ActionCOACH our vision is world abundance through business re-education. So who wins by that? Our employees win, our franchise partners win, our join venture partners around the world win, our customers win, our community wins because we create more jobs we add more value. The government wins, we create more tax revenue by helping it and create more employment. Everybody wins out of that vision of world abundance through business re-education. It doesn’t have to be that massive if you don’t want it to be.
The best vision I can give people to start with is a very simple one; to be the best whatever you’re business is. So let’s imagine you’re a garden designer. To be the very best garden designer in Las Vegas, that’s actually where I live. That could be yours, so interpret…be the very best put your business in there, in and put the area in there, and that’s a great vision to start with if you’re struggling with a vision for your business. So communicate the vision.
Next, is to communicate the culture. If you haven’t documented a culture, document my website ActionCOACH.com and take a look at our 14 points of culture. Zappos, another great example of a company with a really good core culture, or they call it their 5 values. Learn from these companies, and put together a written documented culture. If you’re struggling with that, make sure you chat to your ActionCOACH, make sure they help you through that. It’s a very big part of what we do, making sure that the direction…if you don’t have a vision and a mission and culture statement, it’s very difficult to hire great people, it’s very difficult to keep great people. It’s hard to decide on who is a great person because if you’re only deciding to employ people based on skill set, then you’re really gonna struggle with where you’re moving to in the future. Don’t just employ on skill set, make sure you employ on passion, on heart, on motivation. Are they excited by what you’re doing and where you’re going?
Let’s just jump straight to number 4. Recruiting is a major job of a leader. One of the biggest things they have to do is build people, and hire great people. If you’re a great recruiter of good people, then that’s a great leadership trait. Hiring the best of the best people, finding great people, recruiting them. Keep doing that, it’s part of a leader’s job in any organization. Setting the goals. Again with the vision and mission, you gotta break it down to goals. What are the goals. Where are they. The management is measuring it, but the leader has to set the direction and give people a focus of where we’re going and what we’re aiming to do with that.
Recognition, probably the final major point for a leader is that of recognition. I see all these books where they say you’ve got to recognize in public. You don’t need to give out employee of the week stuff, all you gotta do is send a text message to one of your team and say “Great job today, really impressed by what you did for the Smith job”…whatever it is. A text, an email, or a phone call, or handwritten note even, just a simple one. Twice a day every day, communicate recognition to someone in your organization. It could be a customer, it could be a supplier. Definitely your team members need that recognition. Too many companies I go into them, they say something along the lines of…I ask the employees “Do you hear from your boss more when you do something right, or when you do something wrong?” Majority of the time they hear from their boss when they’re doing something wrong! Make sure your employees, you team mates hear from you when they’re doing something right MORE OFTEN than when they heard from you when they’re doing something wrong. Great book on that, “Whale Done” simple book on management, and leadership based on how they train killer whales. Very very important stuff.
So, management…get it right. Make sure you’ve got competent productive employees. Leadership, passionate focused employees, give them something to be passionate about; a vision, a goal, a destination, where you’re going. Give them focus by giving them that goal, and knowing where they’re going, communicate so they understand what’s going on. Inspire them to be more, to do more, to have more ability in the organization. Remember, great people build your company for you. The quality and caliber of people comes down to the quality and caliber of your management and your leadership. If you can’t get good people, you’re correct. You’ve gotta build good people, and to build good people, you’ve gotta be a great manager, you’ve gotta be a great leader.
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Thanks for being with us today, hope you enjoyed it, and look forward to better management and better leadership. Bye for now!