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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Thinking Managers

Hi All,

The last few days I have been plenty ill with the dreaded flu, so plenty of thinking time....one thing I did have was a visit from DYNO-ROD, I had a partially blocked drain that was getting worse and they came to fix it....well they came....but there were a few things that stopped them from progressing....and that has given me a picture of there organization that was not the best. So what were the issues, the first engineers tools were inadequate and faulty, he did not have any water in his tanks for the high pressure flushing system, when he did manage to get his tanks filled (could not use the garden tap, it has different sized fittings) the pressure flushing system was faulty. The next step was for him to go and get his van repaired and another engineer would be sent to complete the call, but he could not tell me when he would come, first engineer showing I hate my company attitude. The second engineer arrived and, well he did not have any better luck, he needed lifting gear to lift the drain covers, and supprise... supprise , the company only had two sets of the gear in Scotland, so it would have to be tomorrow that they come back and fix the blockage, meanwhile I have a load of raw sewage on the front lawn, well update they have arrived 30 mins ago to complete the job. I have a couple of suggestions for Dyna Rod:
  • Get the operations team to work on procedures to ensure the vans and equipment are fully functioning when they arrive at a job
  • Have a hand out prepared for any customer who may have questions regarding the repair and any other contact numbers required
  • Make sure the engineers know how important it is for them to be motivated and present a good image of there company.

I will let you know how it goes with the drains....so to the article below...many start ups have a CEO who has had not experience ofthe role previous to his new company, I hope this article will help you out a little.

Thinking Managers
Within a company the CEO is generally regarded as being all powerful, yet the fact remains that the average tenure of a CEO is less than 2 years. Against this background, Robert Heller of http://www.thinkingmanagers.com/ considers the nature of the power a CEO.

Power and the Manager
Once in a while journalists and writers get hung up on identifying the most powerful woman or women managers. But what is meant by ‘power’? It might refer to force of personality, which is expected of chief executives of both sexes. But forceful personalities might not necessarily have significant power in the usual sense. The real meaning of corporate power is in the importance of the company, not the individual managers.
Fortune magazine called Carly Fiorina as “the most powerful woman in business” as she was the first female to be appointed CEO of one of the 20 largest companies in the US. But when you examine Fiorina’s actual performance at Hewlett-Packard, the most significant aspect of her power is its limitations. Her major initiative was to secure the acquisition of a rival PC maker Compaq (which had just been taken over Digital Equipment).
The founding families were vehemently opposed to the takeover, and a ferocious battle ensued in and out of the boardroom. Fiorina secured the support of a narrow majority of the shareholders, but it turned out to be a victory gained at too great a cost. Walter Hewlett, who led the family opposition, might well be proved absolutely right – Compaq was a dubious purchase, and perhaps should not have been contemplated. But the epic struggle shows that ultimate power is that of ownership – employees, even those with the title of chief executive, do not possess it.

Actually, the power of the CEO has always been conditional, the largest element by far in the complex network of influence and authority in which all managers participate and which instils each of them a measure of individual power. One of these conditions is that all holders of power must justify their position by their performance, both in results and relationships in the eyes of their superiors and subordinates. The CEO is not an exception to this rule, and quite right too.One of the dissenters among the HP directors, Tom Perkins, said: “I probably am too easily bored with board process, and too preoccupied with customers, growth, market share and the bottom line.” This came as part of a response to a fierce attack on him by Fiorina. But Perkins, a veteran and very successful Silicon Valley venture capitalist, is spot on. Power rises towards the top, and becomes greater as it does. So the way power is exercised must be changed to match. The ultimate power of the CEO is making others take responsibility for all aspects of the organisation, while establishing a modus operandi that instils the boss with complete confidence that those responsibilities are being handled in the best way possible.



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