We Get the Leadership We Deserve

by Frank Roche on February 21, 2011

in Management

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Alexis de Tocqueville said that in a democracy, we get the government we deserve. The philosopher was talking about people not paying attention. About not caring. And how we slowly capitulate to what he called “tyranny.” There’s a parallel in business.

In business, we get the leadership we deserve. Sure, it’s easy to sit around and say “They did this to us” and “They did that to us.” But what about standing up and demanding better leadership? How about expecting your manager to manage and not be your surrogate parent? How about being vocal about what you need to get your job done? How about calling BS when 20 people are in a meeting and no one’s taking responsibility? How about being vocal when pay-for-performance looks a lot more like pay-for-compliance? How about saying that annual performance reviews are a joke?

How about being an adult? And demanding more of our leadership?

Great work environments encourage open communication. They’re not dictatorships. And as recent history has shown, people will put up with that for just so long, then big things happen. I would think that HR and managers should be sitting up and paying attention to the actions of people who won’t put up with leaders who won’t listen.

These are very interesting times. Employees are paying attention again. It’s time for HR to do the same.

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