Conspiritorial LO teams LO7170

Archie Kregear (
Fri, 03 May 1996 16:45:25 -0700

As I mentioned in my introduction a week ago the management where I am
employeed has been a great example of what not to do. I thank everyone
who responded to my intro with some great suggestions and ideas. Putting
a couple of those thoughts together has led me to the theory outlined
below. If anyone has seen something like it in the past or has some
suggestions as to where to take this I would be interested in your

In a situation where the purpose, objective or goal of an organization is
truely correct and honorable, such as the serving of one's customer and
achieving a reasonable profit, but the appointed leaders or managers are
not correct or honorable in their methods, the individual contributors may
band together to accomplish the goal in spite of the incompetance of the
leaders. In my situation, there have been a number of senior managers who
were looking out for themselves first, and the objectives of the company
second. However, there are a few individuals in lower and middle
management who have been committed to the company objectives. These
middle managers have in numerous occasions collaborated together to
accomplish tasks full knowing that senior managers would disapprove
primarily on internal political reasons.

An example: A couple years ago there were times when I have needed to ship
a part to a customer on a rush basis. This required the signature of the
Director of Material Operations who did not want me to succeed in this
company. He routinely held all requests I made for 2 to 5 days before he
signed them. Thus, I waited until he was out of the office (even for
lunch) and signature authority was passed to the manager of the warehouse.
I went to him, and the request was signed off and the part shipped in a
matter of minutes.

Another example: The warehouse needs their computer system upgraded. They
have the parts but not the expertise. They need an engineer to assist
them. The director of engineering does not want to provide any assistance
to the Director of material operations. I request a day off and say that
I will be in over the weekend to make up the time. During the weekend, I
assist the manager of the warehouse in getting the new system running.

These are examples from a couple of years ago, however this week, now that
I am looking, I have seen three instances where a cross departmental team
is pulled together by an individual contributor or lower manager, to
resolve a problem or alter a process. Senior management is not involved
nor even notified of the changes that are made. If Senior management did
get involved, then they would want to "control" the change, gather
information, make a decision and force us to follow the new direction.
What I think that we at the lower levels have realized is that Sr.
managers her do not know what the process is normally so if a change is
made then that will not be noticed. And that we can change things in a
matter of minutes instead of days or weeks.

As Sr. management has turned over in the past, those of us at the bottom
doing the work have learned that in order to get most tasks accomplished,
senior management does not need to be involved. And in fact we conspire
to avoid senior management even knowing what is truely going on. Thus the
Conspiritorial LO team theory.

I doubt that the idea is original, anyone have any information on a
similar situation?


Archie Kregear

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