Some Practical Advice on Management

Howard Mitchell of the Mitchell Communications Group

- concentrate on things you know and things that you are good at

- don't try to do things you cannot do

- start at the bottom

- don't be in a big hurry

- be a good listener

- don't get into battles you cannot win

- beware way of people with big egos

- don't expose yourself financially

- make plans, short and long-term

- be a team player

- be able to make quick decisions

- work twice as hard as your staff and competitors

- create a difference and therefore an advantage

- have a settled private life

- let little things become big things

- say thank you

- if you fail, don't give up

- don't let money run your life

- move on when you've done your job

(source Harold Mitchell, 1010)

Resources (knowledge, time, etc)

Knowledge through learning is the only infinitely renewable resource. Competitors can gain access to other resources like capital, labour, raw materials, and even technology and knowledge. On the other hand, no one can purchase and duplicate an organisation's ability to learn. Learning generally occurs over time and in "real life"; it is not confined to the classroom or training sessions.

Time is becoming a precious resource. Everyone feels that things are speeding up, ie they have to do more, think more, learn more, produce more - they have to do it more often and more quickly. Time is now playing a different role in our lives. Time is as important to a knowledge economy as raw materials were in the Industrial Age. Time costs money; it is one thing we cannot afford to waste. We need to know the value of time

Despite our efforts to manage our time in the hope of delivering a shorter working day and more leisure time, we are working longer hours than our parents. In fact ,

"...long hours are virtually synonymous with achievement, so much so that any move away from the norm is a career risk or as seen dangerously subversive..."

Catherine Fox, 2004d

This is linked with 4 changes in the way we work

"...work has intensified and more is expected from employees; we have internalized the need to work ever harder and longer; new experience of working time is, however, becoming more individualized as shift work, part-time jobs and long hours diverge from the standard working day; the boundaries between work and other parts of existence have blurred; and we have absorbed the idea of efficiency so well it is applied to all of life..."

Madeleine Bunting as quoted by Catherine Fox, 2004d

This has given rise to a new breed of addicted worker as

"...response times are shorter, turnaround on major projects has been compressed, and there are expectations of quick outcome for every effort..."

Catherine Fox, 2004d

The extreme case of this is the binge worker, ie they throw everything at a job, work all hours until it is finished, then relax.

However, remember that there is evidence to suggest, that any work beyond about seven hours a day is considered less productive. The number of hours you work doesn't necessarily result in greater productivity, it's about how you manage work. Our growing obsession with being busy does not necessarily translate into better or more efficient work patterns.

Furthermore,

"...we are starting to see that overworked people pay a price with mistakes and poor health, and that slowing down does not make you a slacker..."

Carl Honore as quoted by Catherine Fox, 2004d

 

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