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RICARDO SEMLER'S GUIDE TO STRESS MANAGEMENT                                                              STRESS MANAGEMENT...
MANAGING WITHOUT MANAGERS. 131
                  STRESS MANAGEMENT (CONTINUED)

 fram your officethe better. The point    ...
Article   harvard business review - guide to stress management found-@_[redsamara.com]
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Article harvard business review - guide to stress management found-@_[redsamara.com]

  1. 1. RICARDO SEMLER'S GUIDE TO STRESS MANAGEMENT STRESS MANAGEMENT (CONTINUEO) There are two things all man- emergency is actually permanent. least70% as well as I can? Yes?Then can happen if I throw this out?" If agershave in common-the 24-hour Stop being a cork. farm it out. Whether or not your you don't tremble, sweat, or grow dar and the annoying need to sleep. 4. No onee/secando it right. The subordinates are overworked should faint when you think of the conse- Without the sleeping,24 hours might truth is, you arereplaceable,as every- notweighin your decision.Remember, quences, toss it. one will discover within a week of This second wastebasket is a crit- be enough. With it, there is no way control of your time is an exercise in selfishness. ical investment, even though you'll to get everything done. After years your funeral. Pile C: Items that fall under the never be able to fill both on a reg- of trying to vanquish demon sleep 5. This problemis urgent. Come on. and the temptation to relax, I tried The real difference between "impor- dubious rubric "a good idea to look ular basis. Keep it anyway. It has a an approach suggested by my doc- tant" and "urgent" is the difference at." One of the most egregious exec- symbolic value. It will babysit your tor, who put it this way: "Slowclown between thoughtfulness and panic. utive fallacies is that you have to in-basket and act like a governess or kiss yourself good-bye." Those are the myths. The second read a líttle of everything in arder every time you wonder why you Struck by this imagery, I learned step is to master my eight cures: to stay well-informed. If you limit bought it. to manage my time and cut my work l. Set an hour to leave the office the number of newspapers, maga- 5. Ask yourself Sloan's question load to less than 24 hours. The first and obey it blindly. If you nor- zines, and internal communications about every lunch and meeting invi- tation. Don't be tímidoAnd practice step is to overcome five myths: mally go borne at 7:00, start leav- that you read regularly, you'll have 1. Results are proportional to efforts. ing at 6:00. If you take work borne more time to do what's important- these three RSVPs: . like think. And remember to keep "Thanks, but I just can't fit it in." The Brazilian flag expresses this on weekends, give yourself a month myth in a slíghtly different formo or two to put a stop to this perni- your reading timely; information "1 can't go, but I think X can." (If "arder and Progress," it says. Of cious practice. is a perishable commodity. you think someone should.) course, it ought to say, ."Order or 2. Take half a dar, maybe even an 3. In dealing with Pile A, always "I'm sorry I can't make it, but do start with the most difficult or the let me know what happened." Progress," since the two never go entire Saturday,to rummage through most time-consuming. It also helps Transform meetings into telephone together. that mountain of paper in your arrice 2. Quantityof work is moreimpor- and put it in three piles. to have a folder for the things that calls or quick conversations in the tant than quality. Psychologically, Pile A: Priority items that require must be done before you go borne hall. When you hold a meeting in this myth mar hold water. The exec- your personal attention and repre- that dar and to make a list of the your office, sit on the edge of your utive who puts in lots of hours can sent matters of indisputable impor- things that simply cannot go undone desk, or when you want to end the for more than a few days or a week. discussion, stand up from behind always say, "Well, they didn't pro- tance. If you put more than four or mote me, but you can see how un- five documents in this category and Everything else is just everything your desk and say "OK, then, that's else. settled.", These tricks are rude but fair that is. Everyone knows I get are not currently the president of here at 8 A.M. and that my own your country, start overo 4. Buy another wastepapér basket. almost foolproof. children can't see me without an Pile B: Items that need your per- I know you already have one. But if 6. Give yourself time to think. appointment. " sonal attention, but not right away. you invited me to go through that Spend half a dar every week away 3. Thepresentrestructuring requires This pile is very tempting; every- pile of papers on your desk, I could from your office. Take your work longer working hours temporarily. thing fits. But don't fall into the trapo fill both in a trice. To help yO! borne, or try working somewhere We think of ourselves as corks on decide what to toss and what to else-a conference room in another Load this stuff on your subordinates, a mountain stream headed for Lake using the 70% test to help you do save, ask yourself the question office, a public library, an airport Placido But the lake ahead is Loch it. Ask yourself: Is there someone asked by the legendary Alfred P. waiting room-any place you can concentrate, and the farther away Ness. The present, temporary on my staff who can do this task at Sloan, ]r.: "What is the worst that
  2. 2. MANAGING WITHOUT MANAGERS. 131 STRESS MANAGEMENT (CONTINUED) fram your officethe better. The point seconds with their letter and then ignorance. In an immense production unir, people fed is, a fresh environment can do won- give it to the governess. tiny, nameless, and incapable of exerting influence on deIs for productivity.Just make sure Twoancillary bits of phone advice: the way work is done or on the final profit made. This you bring along a healthy clase of Ask your assistants to take detailed discipline, especially if you're work- sense of helplessness is underlined by managers who, ing at halle. messages. Ask them always to say jealous of their power and prerogatives, refuse to let sub- you cannottake fuecallat fuemomento 7. About the telephone, my prac- ordinates make any decisions for themselves-sometimes (Depending on who it is, your assis- tical but subversive advice is: Don't tants can always undertake to see if even abolir going to the bathroom. But even if size and return calls. Or rather, return calls you can't be interrupted.) hierarchy can be overcome, why should workers care only to people you want to talk te. 8. Clase your door. Oh, 1 know abolir productivity and company profits? Moreover, even The others will call back. Better Jet, you have an open-door policy, but if you can get them to care, how can they tell when they'll write, and you can spend ten don't be so literal. they're doing the right thing? As Antony Jay pointedout back in the 1950s in Cor- poration Man, human beings weren't designed to work in big groups. Until recently, our ancestors were hunters we work at the high end on quality and price. So our and gatherers. For more than five million years, they critics mar be right. Perhaps nothing we've done can be refined their ability to work in groups of no more than a blueprint for anyone else. Still, il) an industrial world abolir a dozen people. Then along comes the industrial whose methods show obvious signs of exhaustion, the revolution, and suddenly workers are trying to function merit of sharing experience is to encourage experiment efficiently in factories that employ hundreds and even and to plant the seeds of conceptual change. So what thousands. Organizing those hundreds into teams of the hell. . abolir ten members each mar help some, but there's still PARTICIPATORY HOT AIR a limit to how many small teams can work well together. At Semco, we've found the most effective production The first of 5emco's three values is democracy, or unir to consist of abolir 150 people. The exact number employee involvement. Clearly,workers who control is open)to argument, but it's clear that several thousand their working conditions are going to be happier than people in one facility makes individual involvement workers who don't. Just as clearly, there is no contest an illusion. between the company that buys the grudging compliance When we made the decision to keep our units small, of its work force and the company that enjoys the enter- we immediately focused on one facility that had more prising participarían of its employees. than 300 people. The unir manufactured commercial But abolir 90% of the time, participatory management fooGl-serviceequipment-slicers, scales, mear grinders, is just hot air. Not that intentions aren't good. It's just mixers-and used an MRP 11system hooked up to an that implementing employee involvement is so complex, IBMmainframe with dozens of terminals all ayer the so difficult, and, not uncommonly, so frustrating that it planto Paperwork often took two days to make its way is easier to talk abolir than to do. freID one end of the factory to the other. Excess inven- We found four big obstacles to effective participatory tories, late delivery, and quality problems were common. management: size, hierarchy, lack of motivarían, and We had tried various worker participarían programs,

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