What do movie producers, presidents of football clubs, symphony orchestra directors, university presidents, and managers of rock bands have in common? They are all in charge of highly talented and independent people whose potential, when they work together, amounts to more than the sum of their parts. As managers, they must convince the team players to work well together.
“Have the breadth to see the problems, and the depth to solve them.”
— Anonymous (as reported in Tomorrow’s Professor by Richard Reis)
Think of problem solving as the combination of divergent and convergent thinking. When answering a ‘how can we do this’ question, you should first consider various alternatives. That’s the divergent part, where you strive to consider all possible ways to answer the question.
Then you look at each alternative in detail, and test the one(s) that you think will work. That’s the convergent part.
If you are in a managerial position, you should be concerned about how to get the best people to your team and how to help them do their job optimally.
A recent publication from the National Research Council looked at how the intelligence community functions and proposed some changes. Here are highlights from their chapter dedicated to the workforce; these may help you improve how you manage people.
If you’re in charge of a team, your ability to get the best out of your people can mean the difference between failure and success. We talked about how you should adapt your leadership style to your team’s skills and confidence. Here are a few more ideas that you can apply to manage your people well and: