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playing or keeping score?


There's an old saying that "Those who can, do. Those that can't, teach." I reckon that is unfair to teachers who, by and large, do an awesome job. For me, the more appropriate and correct statement is:

"Those that can, do. Those that can't, keep score."

"Keeping Score" has become an entire industry in itself with many so called 'people leaders' and other management roles co-opted to this task. What was once the realm of interaction via conversation between boss and subordinate has given way to forms, spreadsheets, operations management systems, workflow meetings, line balancing tools & productivity reports.

Entire businesses have been consumed by the lure of 'big data' as a means to an end - but sadly, the end (i.e. the goal) becomes lost as more and more people are swallowed by the process.

The result? Management becomes obsessed with the data & ever increasing productivity - to the point where 'personal best' becomes just another target to beat. But worse still, this singular focus on "keeping score" leads to a loss of trust.

Ronald Reagan once opined that his approach was one of "Trust, but verify!". Reagan's mantra was to hire well, delegate, stretch, trust and then inspect what he expected. He didn't need hoards of "Score keepers" to keep people focused and on track.... and he was one of the most trusted and well respected leaders in modern history who got things done.

In the end it doesn't matter what the score is if there is no one wanting to play the game!

#leadership #engagement

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playing or keeping score?


There's an old saying that "Those who can, do. Those that can't, teach." I reckon that is unfair to teachers who, by and large, do an awesome job. For me, the more appropriate and correct statement is:

"Those that can, do. Those that can't, keep score."

"Keeping Score" has become an entire industry in itself with many so called 'people leaders' and other management roles co-opted to this task. What was once the realm of interaction via conversation between boss and subordinate has given way to forms, spreadsheets, operations management systems, workflow meetings, line balancing tools & productivity reports.

Entire businesses have been consumed by the lure of 'big data' as a means to an end - but sadly, the end (i.e. the goal) becomes lost as more and more people are swallowed by the process.

The result? Management becomes obsessed with the data & ever increasing productivity - to the point where 'personal best' becomes just another target to beat. But worse still, this singular focus on "keeping score" leads to a loss of trust.

Ronald Reagan once opined that his approach was one of "Trust, but verify!". Reagan's mantra was to hire well, delegate, stretch, trust and then inspect what he expected. He didn't need hoards of "Score keepers" to keep people focused and on track.... and he was one of the most trusted and well respected leaders in modern history who got things done.

In the end it doesn't matter what the score is if there is no one wanting to play the game!

#leadership #engagement