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• Providing growth experiences. Mentors are highly qualified to guide employees to activities above and beyond their formal career development plans that will be helpful to their career growth and progress. So, while an employee’s career development plan might be silent in the area of learning how to speak Spanish, a mentor might understand that making the suggestion that an employee attend community college Spanish classes would be of great benefit to him due to changing customer demographics.
• Providing career guidance and discussion. Above all, mentors make great sounding boards, and they are usually a safe place for employees to be frank and honest with assessments of their own progress and how they fit within their organizations. The informal discussions that mentors and employees engage in are extremely valuable to the employees, and—ultimately—to the companies for which they work.
LEADERSHIP: THE PEOPLE THING
-------------------------- POP QUIZ! -----------------------------------
A great manager will almost always be skilled at developing and mentoring employees. Reflect on the contents of this chapter in answering
1. What are benefits to developing your employees?
2. How can you better help your employees to learn and grow?
3. Name three specific actions you can use to give an employee increased responsibility.
4. Have you ever had a mentor in your work life or career? If so, what did you most value and learn from that person?
5. What are ways you can help mentor other employees in your organization?
Execution: Getting the Job Done
IT'S A NEW WORLD OUT THERE . . . Setting Goals and . . .
The purpose of goals.
SMART goals made easy. Communicating goals and vision. Maintaining focus on your goals. Making goals happen.
EXECUTION: GETTING THE JOB DONE
GOALS MAKE THINGS HAPPEN
“All performance starts with clear goals” is one of the most time-tested principles of management. What is the primary duty of management? Setting goals is likely to be near the top of the list. If setting goals appears near the bottom of the list, you know there’s a problem. In most companies, top management sets the overall purpose—the vision—of the organization. Middle managers then have the job of developing goals and plans for achieving the vision set by top management. Managers and employees work together to set goals and develop schedules for attaining them.
Managers are immersed in goals—not only for themselves but also for their employees, your department, and your organization. This flood of goals can overwhelm managers as they gallantly try to balance their relative importance. Goals help provide your employees with direction and purpose; they help them see where they’re going and how they can get there. And the way you go about setting goals can impact how motivating (or demotivating) they are to your employees.
If you want to get somewhere meaningful in your business, you and your employees first have to know where to go. And once you’ve decided where to go, the next step is to make plans on how to get there.
Let’s say you have a vision of starting up a new technology incubator in Toronto, Ontario. If you want to achieve this vision, you have three basic approaches:
1. An unplanned, non-goal-oriented approach.
2. A planned, goal-oriented approach.
3. A hope and a prayer.
Which of these three approaches is the most likely to help you achieve your goal (or at least move in the right direction)? A planned,
The Management Bible
goal-oriented approach is the one that will have the best chance of working.
If you want to accomplish something significant, here are a number of key reasons why you should set goals:
• Goals provide direction. If you are planning to start up a new technology incubator in Toronto, there are plenty of different ways to achieve this particular result. The first step, however, is to set a definite vision—a target to aim for and to guide the efforts of you and your organization. Once you have a definite vision, you can translate it into goals that will help you bring your vision to reality.
• Goals tell you how far you’ve traveled. When your goals have dates assigned for their accomplishment, they become milestones along the road to bringing your vision to life. By noting what milestones have been achieved, you know exactly how many remain to reach your vision.
• Goals help to make your overall vision attainable. While you might be able to achieve your vision in one big step if you devoted enough resources to the task, it’s often smarter (and more realistic) to take many small steps to get there. If your vision is to open a new technology incubator in Toronto, you can’t expect to proclaim your vision on Wednesday and walk into a fully staffed and functioning office on Thursday. There are lots of smaller goals—from obtaining office space, to recruiting staff, and much more—to accomplish on the road to achieving your vision. By dividing your efforts into smaller pieces, goals enable you to achieve your overall vision.