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A manager, mentor and creator of inspiring environments.

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A manager, a mentor and a creator of inspiring environment

All of us we probably remember a manager we were pleased to work with, giving us the opportunity to develop talents and to achieve goals. All of us, we can note that when we finished our studies, we only acquired basic knowledge in the discipline we choose. At that stage, things only begin. In an ongoing fast moving environment, we have to learn every day by acquiring useful experience.

What is precisely experience? An efficient experience is not only a range of accumulated performed tasks, but the realisation of projects and assignment with concrete results and the knowledge acquired through the processes. A part of the acquired knowledge is the result of our own question we are putting to ourselves, but also the shared experience and knowledge by our colleagues and managers.

Recently, I put a question about the criteria of a good job. Somebody underlined the fact to work in an inspiring environment as a criteria of motivation, environment where colleagues and managers want to share knowledge with each other, which means a real team spirit, environment where each member want to be part of a collaborative process, and consider only personal success with team success. Everybody can contribute to such environment, but it is the manager responsibility to create it and to make it work. A manager is responsible of a team, with people having several competences and capabilities. The point is to create an environment where the people can demonstrate their talents, and create more added value than the sum of the individual talents. It is important to create a collaborative process, a dynamic where each team member can share knowledge with all the team members, where the seniors can share their own experience and recommendation and teach the juniors. Here I am not only underlying the combination of competences in a team, but also the level of competence and experience of each member. The importance of a balance between seniors and juniors is critical, for the reason that as senior, we do not only acquire knowledge, but we developed also methodology of work through several experiences. Methodology is a key factor in a project, in an assignment. Knowledge answers to what I have to do, but methodology answers to how have I to do it.

The manager has to play a key role in the acquisition of methodology by his team members. It is obvious if he wants to delegate processes and see these processes done on an efficient way. He can reach such results if we share his own experience with his collaborator, giving them the opportunity to work autonomously. Personally, I remember managers advising me and contributing to make me important steps in productivity improvements. They gave me small tips giving influence on my career direction, revealing talents and capabilities.

I think that a manager has to be a mentor, has to inspire and to build inspired and enthusiastic teams. Considering the fact to share knowledge and information, he clearly subscribes to a sustainable and long terms view of the organisation. He clearly understands this quote of Peter Drucker: “We now accept the fact that learning is a lifelong process of keeping abreast of change. And the most pressing task is to teach people how to learn.”

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Written by Eric Saint-Guillain

September 6, 2010 at 22:07

2 Responses

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  1. Good view of what should be a team. I personaly think that peaple are not good or bad but are at different level in their evolution. Mixing is certainly the best approche. Your view on the manager role is interesting and sounds like the new role of parent which is not to protect childeren but well learn them how to protect themself. This is of course much more difficult and time consuming as it’s a never end story. Unfortunatelly a manager is still too often a Boss like a king in is small kindom but things chance slowly thanks to comments like this !

    Jean-Michel Hardy

    September 8, 2010 at 14:29

    • Hi Jean-Michel,

      Thank you for your comment and feedback ! Indeed, the role of manager is moving. With the development of information technlogies, a new way of collaboration appeared, called “collective intelligence”. With the technologies growth, each member of a team has a key role in the process chain, and each member has to be responsible for his role and to receive the reward of his effort. In this context, the manager has not to be the only one who knows, but the one who leads and advices people.

      (Hope everything is fine for you ! ;-))

      Eric Saint-Guillain

      September 8, 2010 at 22:19


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