1. If your team pays more attention to your presence than the work they are doing, there is a problem. You need to be able to get people's attention, but they shouldn't pay attention to whether you are in their peripheral vision.
2. There is a short path from worrying about whether you are "in the loop" to micromanaging. A micromanager may feel that they are doing lots of stuff and contributing value (because hey, that effort has to be worth something) but they are wrong.
3. A manager who is more concerned with the presentation of employees than what they are actually doing has the wrong priorities. At least if you're managing people in IT.
Some of the best managers I've seen "fail" at at least one of these.
#1 - People don't immediately drop their work to brown-nose you? Good.
#2 - People know their stuff well enough to work autonomously? Good
#3 - Your rules are considered unnecessary/counterproductive and are ignored? Discuss the necessity of the rules with your employees instead of banging your chest and hooting at them.
In general most managers just aggregate or distribute information. Or just toss around a schedule for which they generally will have no justification.
In many companies managers are part HR. Much of their time goes is performance evaluation, ratings, hiring etc. That included, it gives them complete space to run their own gangs.
But if you are looking for value building, wealth creating, directing teams, taking tough decisions and working to make things happen. Such managers are rare enough to be exceptions to prove the original rule.
Did hn just get trolled?
wow, just wow... this article strikes me as being written by a very insecure person, trying to bedazzle his/her 'underlings' with 'authority'
>> 1. They act like you're not there
Oh my... pay attention to me! I'm important!
Why don't you stand up and applaud me when I walk into the office!
Respect by deeds, not appearance!
>> 2. They Don’t Keep You in the Loop
Guess what, we hire professionals to do a specific job. If I can't trust them to handle their work on their own, I already failed beforehand as a manager. I want them to notify me when they have a problem they can't resolve themselves - all other matters, I trust my team 100%!
>> 3. They Don’t Play by the Rules
Again - unless you haven't inherited a bad team from a previously bad manager - you failed BEFOREhand as a manager if people don't play by the rules.
Also, rather contrived examples of someone not playing by the rules...
Really? Someone coming back later from lunch is the biggest issue you encountered as a manager?
Who gives a fuck?!
Did that guy have a positive impact on the product / the team / the company during that day?
In addition: "didn’t ask for the necessary approval when performing certain tasks for her role."
....insecure manager working in a corporate environment comment right there.
Things I've found to be helpful during my time as a manager:
> Help people 'getting to done'
> Listen to teams issues and try to resolve them
> Have 'character' and lead by example
> Help them to grow, as a person and an employee
> Don't bullshit them, then they won't bullshit you
> Be 'true'! Put your money where your mouth is
The rest will follow, even if you aren't the big 'Kahuna'.
PS: sorry, long comment and a lot of '' use :)
Why don't we keep you in the loop? Well, you're not technically competent enough to understand the problem so I go straight to the devs on whatever issue I'm dealing with, explaining it to you is a waste of my time. This also leads into why we ignore you; you don't understand the issue, you can't fix it, you're effectively useless except for marking out schedules and having slightly higher authority than I do.
To be honest I don't understand why this is on HN. Since when did these simple, short, and obvious posts become amazing and worth reading?
Your employees probably think you suck as a manager because you do.
I've only been reading HN for a short while, but my impression thus far is that the people just sort of throw up a post for everything they run across that seems even slightly interesting, and, well, see what sticks... :]
I read HN via the RSS feed, and it's way ahead of everything else I read in terms of article-count.
[This is in contrast with sites like, e.g., slashdot—however horrible its editors are (and it's true, they are), it does have editors...]
I think some people just read the title think "yes, this looks like something I want to read on hn" and upvote.
It's the lazy thing to do, I know I have done it sometimes and sometimes I have regretted doing it. The problem is that there is no way to withdraw an upvote and the upvote arrow is right there beside the title beckoning you to click it now, not to wait after you read the article and then come back.
Possible solutions: run a content extractors on links weight votes with length, open links in a frame, put up upvote arrow with the content, add de-upvote arrow.
Managers often lose sight that their job should be the least selfish role in the organization and that their job is really determined by the success or failure of those they manage. Your job is to facilitate your employees, not handle them. Your job is to nurture their talents and help them with their faults. The greatest success a manager can have is helping someone live up to their potential.
As for the educating the manager part, I understand where you're coming from. You shouldn't have to sit down and teach your manager what the MVC pattern is, or how it's implemented in the language your company is using. You want to bring Grails into an organization that's never seen it before? Okay, I can understand explaining the technology to those folks above you, giving them the pros and cons of working with it and letting them make a decision on whether it's the right fit for the organization.
From my experience working in in IT, if you aren't in the loop about various matters that is not a good sign. Personally, I keep my manager out of the loop because she makes the problem 10x worse. Even then when I do discuss matters, she isn't willing to own any decisions.
A manager should be a people and idea cultivator. That is a very rare breed to find.