I managed people for over 30 years, as few as 22 and as many as 1300. I began my career as an authoritarian spending the vast majority of my time figuring out what needed correction or needed doing or needed to be communicated and issuing orders. After 12 years of this and being quite disappointed at not being able to significantly raise the performance of my worst and middle level performers, I reevaluated my approach. I decided to start truly listening to my people. I found they had many complaints, suggestions and questions and I attempted to respond appropriately to those . The more I did that, the better they performed, eventually doubling their productivity above what I had thought humanly possible. Through listening, I eventually learned how to double even this level of performance, by converting followers back to their original state of non-following. In this state, they ceased to waste the huge amount of brainpower following requires and were able to unleash 100% of theirs on the work. The result was that the vast majority of my 1300 person workforce became highly motivated, highly committed, and fully engaged literally loving to come to work and easily able to best our competitors. I loved the 300% productivity gains.
I now help executives and managers to become exceptional managers/leaders of people. www.bensimonton.com