Friday, March 30, 2007


Thoughts on Bad Management...

When something isn't working, do more of it...

Are you one of those who are erroneously convinced that some desirable result is caused by taking some particular kind of action. Subsequent failure of the desirable result to occur is not used as disconfirming evidence that you're wrong to be convinced that way, but is instead used as evidence of a need for more of that action.

Have you ever heard of the Hawthorne Effect which expresses the tendency of humans to temporarily improve their performance when they are aware it is being studied? During a study on the effect of different lighting levels on productivity, researchers first lowered the lights. Productivity improved. Raised the lights. Productivity was still improved. They returned to the original lighting levels. Productivity was still improved. One can conclude that productivity is increased when management flickers the lights periodically.

None of the management studies however have acknowledged the simple fact that folks like having non-intrusive attention paid to them. If you're taking an interest in what they're doing, motivation and productivity are likely to rise. I wonder if I can consider myself a bad manager when I scream the very next time someone is complaining about complaining and/or discussing the notion of performance-based compensation where you are paid according to someone else's perception of what your performance should be...

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