Summary -First Break All The Rules

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Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman present the results of two major studies. One
offers findings from polling more than a million employees about their workplace needs.
The other is a 20-year study of how the methods of the world’s greatest managers
differ from those of lesser managers. This study involved interviews with more than
80,000 managers from 400 companies, the largest such investigation ever undertaken. The authors found key differences that fly in the face of traditional thinking about successful managerial practices. This astute, well-written report presents the major principles of great managers, and offers examples of leaders who put their knowledge of effective management into practice. The book’s conclusions rest on in-depth research, not theory.
This painstaking study authoritatively describes how employees feel about management
and explains exactly what great managers do, and why and how they achieve top results.Recommended it to everyone who manages, wants to manage or is managed.

Published in: Business

Summary -First Break All The Rules

  1. 1. Some Impressionistic takes from the book Marcus Buckingham & Curt Coffman’s “First break all the rules” by Ramakrishnan ( Ramki) ramaddster@gmail.com
  2. 2. About the Authors With over 1.6 million copies of his landmark bestsellers in print, Marcus Buckingham, author of bestsellers First, Break All the Rules: What the World's Greatest Managers Do Differently (with Curt Coffman) and Now, Discover Your Strengths (with Donald O. Clifton), spent his 15-year career as a pioneering researcher and a global-practice leader at the Gallup Organization, helping to build a ballooning consulting practice at the firm with more than 1,000 clients, including Best Buy, Disney, Fidelity Investments, Toyota, and Wells Fargo. Marcus Buckingham has been featured in Fast Company magazine.
  3. 3. Prelude Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman expose the fallacies of standard management thinking in First, Break All the Rules: What the World's Greatest Managers Do Differently. In seven chapters, the two consultants for the Gallup Organization debunk some dearly held notions about management, such as "treat people as you like to be treated"; "people are capable of almost anything"; and "a manager's role is diminishing in today's economy." "Great managers are revolutionaries," the authors write. "This book will take you inside the minds of these managers to explain why they have toppled conventional wisdom and reveal the new truths they have forged in its place." The authors have culled their observations from more than 80,000 interviews conducted by Gallup during the past 25 years. Quoting leaders such as basketball coach Phil Jackson, Buckingham and Coffman outline "four keys" to becoming an excellent manager: Finding the right fit for employees, focusing on strengths of employees, defining the right results, and selecting staff for talent--not just knowledge and skills. First, Break All the Rules offers specific techniques for helping people perform better on the job. For instance, the authors show ways to structure a trial period for a new worker and how to create a pay plan that rewards people for their expertise instead of how fast they climb the company ladder. "The point is to focus people toward performance," they write. "The manager is, and should be, totally responsible for this." Written in plain English and well organized, this book tells you exactly how to improve as a supervisor.
  4. 4. People leave managers, not companies. If you have a turnover problem, look first to your managers.  People don’t change that much.  Don’t waste time trying to put in what was left out.  Try to draw what was left in. That is hard enough. ESSENTIAL POINT: Great managers recognize that each person is motivated differently, that each person has his/her own way of thinking, and own style of relating to others. Great managers know there is a limit to how much remolding they can do to someone. They don’t bemoan these differences and try to grind them down – instead they CAPITALIZE on them. They try to help each person become more and more of who he/she already is.
  5. 5. 1. Do I know what is expected of me? 2. Do I have the materials and equipment I need to do my work right? Managers/Leaders encourage their team to know : “What do I get?”
  6. 6. 3.Do I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day? 4.In the last seven days, have I received recognition or praise for good work? 5. Does my supervisor, or someone at work, seem to care about me as a person? 6.Is there someone at work who encourages my development? Managers/Leaders encourage their team to know : “What do I give?”
  7. 7. 7. At work, do my opinions seem to count? 8.Does the mission of my company make me feel my job is important? 9.Are my co-workers committed to doing quality work? 10. Do I have a best friend at work? Managers/Leaders encourage their team to know : “Do I belong here?”
  8. 8. 11.In the last six months, has someone talked with me about my progress? 12.This past year, have I had opportunities at work to learn and grow? Managers/Leaders encourage their team to know : “How can we all grow?”
  9. 9. A great manager is a CATALYST Catalyst: Ability to do four key activities REALLY well 1. Select the Person 2. Set Expectations 3. Motivate the Person 4. Develop the Person
  10. 10. 1. Select for Talent- not simply experience, intelligence, or determination 2. Define the right outcomes - not the right steps 3. Focus on strengths- not on weaknesses 4. Find the right fit- not simply the next rung on the ladder A great manager is someone who says, You come to work with me, and I’ll help you be as successful as possible; I’ll help you grow; I’ll help you make sure you’re in the right role; I’ll provide the relationship for you to understand and know yourself. And I want you to be more successful than me. The Four Keys of Great Leaders
  11. 11. Talent  A recurring pattern of THOUGHT, FEELING or BEHAVIOUR that can be productively applied. Filter  A characteristic way of responding to the world around us.  It tells you which stimuli to notice and which to ignore; which to love and which to hate.  It is UNIQUE to you.  Your filter and your recurring patterns of behaviour are enduring.  Your filter more than your race, sex, age or nationality is YOU. Key 1- Select For Talent
  12. 12. • Cannot be taught • 4-line highways of your mind • Recurrent patterns of thought, feeling or behavioural • Difficult to transfer Talents • Can be taught by breaking total performance into steps • “How to do” of a role • Transferable Skills • Can be taught • What you are aware of • Factual knowledge – things you know • Experiential knowledge – understandings picked up along the way • Transferable Knowledge Elements of Performance Key 1- Select For Talent
  13. 13. Striving talents The WHY of a person; why each person is motivated to push and push just that little bit harder Key 1- Select For Talent Thinking talents The HOW of a person; how each person thinks, weighs alternatives; comes to decisions Relating talents The WHO of a person; whom people trust; builds relationships; confronts; ignores
  14. 14. Key 1- Select For Talent How Leaders find Talent Know what talents you are looking for in width and depth Keep reviewing & studying your best people
  15. 15. How to manage by remote control Leader’s dilemma: How do you retain control and focus people on performance When you know that you cannot force people to behave in the same way? Key 2- Define the right outcomes
  16. 16. the temptation to Control!! Key 2- Define the right outcomes  I want Perfect People  My people don’t have enough talent  Some outcomes defy definition  Trust is precious – it must be
  17. 17. What is right for your customers? What is right for your company? What is right for the individual? “Define the right outcomes and then let each person find their own route toward those outcomes” Key 2- Define the right outcomes
  18. 18.  Instead, you must select employees who have the talent to listen and to teach, and then you must focus them towards simple emotional outcomes like partnership & advice.  If you manage to do this, it is something that is very hard to steal.” Key 2- Define the right outcomes  “Forcing your employees to follow required steps only prevents customer dissatisfaction.  If your goal is truly to satisfy, to create advocates, then the step- by-step approach alone cannot get you there.
  19. 19.  Focus on each person’s strengths & manage around the weaknesses  Don’t try to fix the weaknesses  Don’t try to perfect each person - Help each person become more of what they all ready are Key 3- Focus on Strength Consider what happens when performance is measured against “excellent” performers rather than the average.
  20. 20. Casting is everything  If you want to turn talent into performance, you have to position each person so that you are paying her to do what she is naturally wired to do. You have to cast him/her in the right role.  Everyone has the talent to be exceptional at something. The trick is to find that ‘something.’ & in the casting. Key 3- Focus on Strength
  21. 21.  No News kills behaviour  It’s the fairest thing to do  It’s the best way to learn  It’s the only way to reach excellence  Best way to break through the ceiling Key 3- Focus on Strength Invest most time with your best people
  22. 22. Key 3- Focus on Strength Devise a support system Find a complementary partner Find an alterative role Determine if poor performance is trainable Determine if poor performance is not due to you as manager tripping the wrong trigger!! Determine if it’s a weakness or a non-talent Managing around a weakness
  23. 23. Key 4- Find the right fit A rung too far  Most employees are promoted to their level of incompetence. It’s inevitable. It’s built into the system. The problem with climbing the ladder  One rung does not necessarily lead to another.  The conventional career path is condemned to create competition and conflict. Why not create heroes in every role?  Conventional ‘wisdom’ programmes employees to hunt for marketable skills and experience to climb to the next rung. This thinking is often flawed.
  24. 24. Three career development fallacies  Each rung of the “promotion ladder”, with just a little more training – the employee will be able to repeat the success on the rung above.  Great managers know that one rung does not necessarily lead to another  Conventional career path is condemned to create conflict; lots of people vying for limited opportunities  Great managers have a better idea: Carve out alternative career paths by conveying meaningful prestige on every role.  Varied experiences make the employee more attractive  Self-discovery is the driving, guiding force for a healthy career. Great managers know that it is this search for a full understanding of your talents and non-talents that serves as the source of energy powering your career. Key 4- Find the right fit
  25. 25.  “Before you promote someone, look closely at the striving, thinking and relating talents needed to excel in the role.  After scrutinising the PERSON and the ROLE, you may still choose promotion.  Since each person is highly complex, you may still end up promoting someone into a position where he struggles. No manager finds the perfect fit every time.  But at least you will have taken the TIME to weigh the FIT between the DEMANDS of the role and the TALENT of the person”. Key 4- Find the right fit
  26. 26. Create Hero’s in every role Set up levels of achievement for Every role For every role, define pay in broad ranges, with top-end of lower-level role overlapping bottom end of role above Set up ‘creative acts of revolt’ (special projects) Key 4- Find the right fit
  27. 27. What great Leaders do Level the Playing field Hold up the Mirror Create a Safety Net Key 4- Find the right fit
  28. 28. “Tough love is a mind-set.  An uncompromising focus on excellence with a genuine need to care.  It focuses great managers to confront poor performance early and directly  It allows them to keep their relationship with the employee intact even if the employee has to be “ let go” Key 4- Find the right fit  Understanding that each person possesses enduring patterns of thought, feelings and behaviour liberates managers who have to confront poor performance. Because it frees the manager from blaming the employee.”
  29. 29. Here are 15 pearls of wisdom in a nutshell from First Break All the Rules
  30. 30. Know what can be taught, and what requires a natural talent. 1. Know the employee’s talent
  31. 31. Standardize the end , but not the means. As long as the means are within the company’s legal boundaries & industry standards, let the employee use his own style to deliver the result or outcome you want. 2. Set the right outcomes, just not the steps
  32. 32. “The best managers never try to fix weaknesses; instead they focus on strengths and talent.” 3. Motivate by focusing on strengths, not weaknesses
  33. 33. If an employee is not performing at excellence, maybe he/ she is not cast in the right role. 4. Casting is important
  34. 34. Respect it enough to hire for talent to match. 5. Every role is noble
  35. 35. See if the candidate’s recurring patterns of behavior match the role he is to fulfill. Ask open-ended questions and let him talk. Listen for specifics. 6. Excel in the art of the interview
  36. 36. Find ways to measure, count, and reward outcomes. 7. Result oriented
  37. 37. Give constant feedback/ feed forward. If you can’t spend an hour every quarter talking to an employee, then you shouldn’t be a Leader 8. Invest time with your (best) People
  38. 38. There are many ways of alleviating a problem or non- talent. Devise a support system, find a complementary partner for him, or an alternative role. 9. Complementary Partner
  39. 39. Simply offer bigger rewards within the same range of his work. It is better to have an excellent highly paid waitress or bartender on your team than promote him or her to a poor starting-level bar manager. 10. Do not promote someone until he reaches his level of incompetence
  40. 40. Great managers don’t use complicated appraisal systems. Instead, they concentrate on what to tell each employee and how to tell them. 11. Simplicity “The best managers reject conventional wisdom.”
  41. 41.  Great managers also frequently interact with each worker, not just once a year at review time.  Meet, at a minimum, once a quarter to discuss performance.  The meeting doesn’t have to last long, but it must focus on performance.  One clear advantage to frequent feedback is that poor performance can be corrected earlier rather than be left for a “bombshell” discussion at annual review time. “The best managers treat every employee as an individual.” 12. Frequent Interaction
  42. 42. All reviews should focus on the future. Great managers ask workers to identify where they want to go and how they are going to go about getting there. The best managers know they are on stage everyday. They know their people are watching every move they make. 13. Focus on the future
  43. 43. Great leaders also ask workers to track their own performance and write down successes, goals and discoveries throughout the review period. 14. Self-tracking
  44. 44.  Study the best managers in the company and revise training to incorporate what they know.  Send your talented people to learn new skills or knowledge.  Change recruiting practices to hire for talent, revise employee job descriptions and qualifications. 15. Some homework to do
  45. 45. 1. Know the employee’s talent 2. Set the right outcomes, not just the steps 3. Motivate by focusing on strengths, not weaknesses. 4. Casting is important 5. Every role is noble 6. Excel in the art of the interview. 7. Result-Oriented 8. Spend time with your best people 9. Complementary partner 10. Do not promote someone until he reaches his level of incompetence 11. Simplicity 12. Frequent interaction 13. Focus on the future 14. Self-tracking 15. Some homework to do Summary
  46. 46. Keep the focus on outcomes Value world-class performance in every role Study your best people & spend time with them Teach the language of great managers Master keys that senior management of a company can use to break through ‘conventional wisdom’s’ barricades What is that we can to create a friendly climate for our employees A first step – Follow our own ten golden rules- (Indicative)
  47. 47. Ten Golden Rules ( Indicative) 1. I will delight our customers in everything I do 2. I will openly appreciate others views, ideas & work and I will look for opportunities to appreciate others, pro-actively. 3. I will share information , ideas, knowledge & show concern to my colleagues. 4. I will look at an issue from a perspective of what and not who 5. I will be honest and constructive in providing & receiving feedback/ feed forward 6. I will be open to ideas , suggestions and changes for betterment 7. I will honor the commitments based on the mutual agreement with the team partners 8. I will always demonstrate positive attitude, approach and maturity in all my dealings with the team members, customers and other business partners 9. I will listen patiently & allow my sub-ordinates to express their views 10.I will spend time with my team – a particular day in a week over lunch at office
  48. 48. End Thoughts  “The needs of the COMPANY and the needs of the EMPLOYEE, misaligned since the birth of the corporation over 150 years ago, are CONVERGING.  The intersection of the company’s search for VALUE and each individual’s search for IDENTITY are forces of change that have seeded into the corporate landscape for over a decade.  The best leaders are those who know how to be CATALYSTS and speed up these forces of change.”

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