Saturday, February 08, 2014

The wrong map

Please check out my latest article over at the athenahealth Leadership Forum.  Comments are welcome over there or here.  Thanks.

1 comment:

Barry Carol said...

One of the most important lessons I learned in the money management business over the years is to understand the consequences of being wrong vs. the rewards for being right. The consequences of being wrong, in this context, are not just about losing money but also about future career prospects and risk of being fired following a bad investment or a tough year.

Former General Electric CEO, Jack Welch, told a story about being a young engineer in GE’s Plastics Division and having a plant blow up on his watch. He was called to New York to meet with senior management following the incident. He expected to get yelled at and then fired. He said “They didn’t fire me. They didn’t even yell at me.” They just wanted to understand what happened and figure out what to do to ensure that it didn’t happen again.

So, I think it’s critically important for everyone to understand and correctly perceive how the organization treats failures that happen despite good faith and reasonable effort. Can lower ranking people see that there are people above them in the organizations who had visible failures and still moved up? One organization I once worked for expected people to always put their best foot forward even when things weren’t going well. Delivering bad news was frowned upon. That’s not the way to operate, in my opinion.