Folding vs Influencing and Developing

In my earlier post I mentioned that Origami and Management has some similarity.  Folding was analogous to influencing and developing in management. Unfolding was to correcting and engaging. Refolding was to motivating and empowering.  For now, I had used terms for leadership in management.  Will address the distinction between both eventually.

A piece of paper, flat on the table, if folded in half by lifting both edges is a valley fold.  Inverting the paper will make it a mountain fold.  Then there is a degree of how hard to fold the paper.  The origami art primarily is about folding and the model is either designed or modified from an existing design.  In either case, the artist has to have in mind some idea of what he will want to achieve from that piece of paper.  Similarly for the manager, he needs to have in mind what he wants to see achieved, and ‘fold’ by fold’ his people.

The manager’s tasks are to create value from what he has and aligns every decision and action to meet the requirements of the future for the growth of the company.  To do these tasks, he will need to set objectives, organize workflows, develop people, measure performance and motivate people.  He needs to be competent to influence people to support his objectives and follow the workflows.  Develop them with the right capability to do the work and evaluate how well they perform.

To influence his staff, the manager needs to walk the talk.  A manager, who lives out the company’s core values, will have a higher impact on his staff’s attitude in the workplace.  An employee needs to have the confidence in his manager that he will be assigned to do the right things.  The manager’s ability to make the right decision can also have influence on his staff’s willingness to do the work.  Managers should set objectives and communicate to his staff with clear expectations upfront and align as the business climate changes.  Regular dialogue sessions help both to calibrate these objectives and it also helps improve boss-staff relationship.

Not all employees that are hired will be perfect match to the job requirement.  As such, the manager needs to assess his staff’s performance and work on his development. The staff will feel that his boss cares for his growth and will be more accommodative in times of challenges or crisis.  It is also good for the manager to ensure that his staff develops with the right competence to do the job well, and in turn, adds value to the company.  The staff should acquire the right education to equip him for the job.  The manager is responsible for the staff to know the appropriate workflows that will enable him to do the work.  To develop the staff so that the staff knows what he needs to do next.  The manager needs to develop and communicate processes for normal flow as well as for abnormal flow.

I will cover the other aspects of managing in subsequent  articles….for now, thanks for your patience to read my posts.

Leave a Reply