The word is that for many years he was “anti-management”. The reason was that Google hired the most talented software engineers, and having a layer of supervisors to manage them and prioritize their work was an unnecessary cost and impediment to getting work done. He reasoned highly talented people should be able to manage themselves. Google decided to use data to test the hypothesis that “managers don’t matter” anymore.
They were surprised by the findings and they were wrong. Their research showed that not only were managers critical to successful operations, but that their “good managers” actually increased job satisfaction and employee retention. Google subsequently researched, “What does a “good manager” look like, and how do you create more of them?”
Their research identified 8 key traits that managers need to possess in order to be successful.
1. Have a vision
2. Be a good communicator
3. Be productive and results oriented
4. Be a good coach
5. Empower the team and do not micromanage
6. Use your technical skills to advise
7. Express concern for team members’ well being
8. Help with career development
Google now hires and trains their managers to be able to deliver in these 8 areas. In many other organizations, unfortunately, most new managers are left to sink or swim when they get promoted into a management role.
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