Will Sr. Managers Change? LO6898

jpomo@gate.net ("jpomo@gate.net")
Mon, 22 Apr 1996 14:17:03 +0000

Replying to LO6854 --

On Sun, 21 Apr 1996 20:09 Martin Raff wrote -

> >Do you really think that senior managers in most organizations will really
> >change as a result of their encounter with LO theory?
> I think this is a very difficult issue. Leaders nearly always semm
> to run a mile if they sense that personal change for them is needed
> in an organisation's change programme.
[Quote of prev msg trimmed by your host...]

Martin has illuminated some very important considerations and is
right on the mark as to the problem. Because of these conditions, we
have found that change for these bosses is very similar to quitting
smoking -

1 - they first need to understand the effects of their current
behavior, positive and negative.

2- they need to understand possible alternative behaviors and their
effects, both positive and negative.

3- they need to understand the exact actions, not concepts, which
they must perform in order to change to the new behavior and the same
for all of their subordinates.

In our experience, most of what passes as changes which outsiders
attempt to get executives and managers to effect do not include
compelling reasons for change, neither for why present behavior is
incorrect nor why the new behavior would be more correct. In
addition, it may not include the all important "specific actions" to
effect the change. Bosses understand that attempting to convert
subordinates is a difficult process and without these tools, change
requires the use of force through orders rather than gaining
commitment through selling the change by the power of reasons and
actions which anyone down on the shop floor can understand. About as
difficult as selling theologically based ethical standards to workers.

One other important aspect of change is that it must fit within some
overall philosophy of management such that it is not inconsistent
with other efforts. Most consultants are so narrow as to ignore many
other considerations which the executive or manager must take into
account and which may or may not be effected by this new knowledge.
Bosses know that they have been led astray many times by consultants
and thus are very skeptical of the new "fad".

We joined this list in an attempt to start to understand what "LO
theory" exists and the extent to which it has met these requirements.
We have learned that neither TQM nor Reengineering have included
these necessary elements and that many companies have suffered
implementation failures because of it. Perhaps the people who are
selling these products are too successful to take the time to account
for these considerations or the considerations are too hard to meet.
There is certainly little agreement over what leadership actually is
by those who profess to be its experts.

To my associate, a manager of people for over 30 years, LO goes
without saying and he cannot conceive of an effective group which
does not believe that training and education are the keys to success
in the future. For him, these are simply investments whose benefits
will never be clearly foreseen today, but always felt in the future.
Of course, he believes the same about TQM and Reengineering, but
understands that these niche markets have appeared due to a lack of
professionalism in executive ranks, i.e. too many people who don't
understand what the work force must do to succeed. To us, training
and education is just one of many support functions through which
executives and managers "lead" their people to outstanding
productivity, morale, commitment, creativity, teamwork and the like.
What LO is we are just beginning to learn.

Our question: does LO theory and practice effectively address all
three elements I specified above?

Regards, Joan
Joan Pomo The Finest Tools for Managing People
Simonton Associates Based on the book
jpomo@gate.net "How to Unleash the Power of People"


"jpomo@gate.net" <jpomo@gate.net>

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