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  1. 1. RightPlacingVince KellenSenior Consultant, Cutter ConsortiumCIO, University of Kentucky© Vince Kellen
  2. 2. Agenda g Knowledge worker productivity I d Inadequacies of the dominant regime i f th d i t i An alternate approach Transformational leadership Impediments Summary© Vince Kellen 2
  3. 3. Problem Knowledge worker productivity varies wildly • Programmer A p g produced clean code 3X faster than p gprogrammer B • Architect A engineers similar solutions at half the cost as Architect B • Project manager A requires 1/10 of your time as Project manager B • Call center agent A completes calls in 3/5 the time as agent B • IT team A completes projects in 1/3 the time as Team B • IT division X consumes twice the budget as division B for half the output Why is this? • Business culture business context the history of the firm culture, context, • Influence of management • Individual differences in mental abilities, motivation© Vince Kellen 3
  4. 4. Observation A few employees are ON FIRE and progressing rapidly Why is this? • Cognitive development? • Training? • Practice and experience? • Role or organizational alignment? Or are they simply madly in love with what they are doing?© Vince Kellen 4
  5. 5. How Do You Know… If you are MADLY IN LOVE with your work? • Your spouse, family tells y p y you • Your friends tell you • Your co-workers tell you Maybe. But perhaps a good guide for this answer is • Your body tells you Addicted to work? Is this a good thing or bad thing? • Depends on the outcome • Good stress versus bad stress • Growth in skills and expertise versus stagnation© Vince Kellen 5
  6. 6. How We Learn Things… g Long-term memory L t Working memory Information Information© Vince Kellen 6
  7. 7. Implications p Relative to long-term memory, working memory is tiny The font of deep expertise (and hence great knowledge worker knowledge-worker productivity) lies in highly structured and interlinked long-term memory Some of IQ is a function of working memory capacity, which can vary g y p y, y significantly between individuals. IQ is part innate, part developed in childhood S Some very high IQ people will h hi h l ill have t ibl j b expertise terrible job ti Some not-so-high IQ people will have darned good job expertise The rate at which information gets stored and codified in long-term memory is a function of time, difficulty of the task, and effort D t Determined, not-so-high IQ people can d i d t hi h l develop great j b expertise l t job ti© Vince Kellen 7
  8. 8. Effort Passion precedes effort Wh t is passion? What i i ? • It is more than engagement, job-fit, organization-fit • A strong desire, an emotional bond • An identification of the self in the task • It can transcend the organization and the role • It can be cultivated • It can look obsessive • Is it another word for an addiction? How can we cultivate and channel motivation, determination and passion in knowledge workers?© Vince Kellen 8
  9. 9. Do We Have the Wrong Approach? g pp To effectively manage knowledge workers in the 21st century, we may have the wrong regime of practices in place Dominant regime • Identify strategy, tactics • Design the org structure • Identify units, then roles • Hire people to fit the role Problems • Activities are often arbitrarily packaged and defined (look at EA methodologies, TQM frameworks, industry job descriptions) • Designers have very imperfect knowledge of the breadth and depth of activities in IT work© Vince Kellen 9
  10. 10. The Dominant Regime g Organizational Strategy St t Business Unit Strategy Objectives, Tactics, Capabilities Functions/Units/Structure Roles Skills, Knowledge, Ability Recruit Activities Responsibilities© Vince Kellen 10
  11. 11. Question While this approach simplifies life for executives who must quickly design and implement organizational structures structures, does it materially affect the productivity of knowledge workers?© Vince Kellen 11
  12. 12. Another Approach pp Roles Life mission Passion Roles Tailor Personality, traits, values Roles Skills, abilities, experience Roles Functions/Units/Structure Objectives, Tactics, Capabilities Business Unit Strategy Organizational Strategy© Vince Kellen 12
  13. 13. What is Different in This Approach? pp Rather than recruiting a person to a position, recruit a position to the person • Assemble a role fit for the qualities of the person • Look at the set of people/roles and derive an organizational structure • Determine the right way to match people to the structure – Manager assessment – Let the employee pick the team he/she wants! One must decompose the human spirit • Our ability to discuss the structure of human motivation and expertise development does not advance much past 7th grade • Our penchant as managers is to discuss things other than sociology, psychology and emotion • Natural leaders have skills in these areas that usually developed y p unknowingly© Vince Kellen 13
  14. 14. Features of the Approach pp1. Person first, role second2. Passion i P i inventories, l t i learning plans i l3. Flexible position descriptions4. Modular, changeable organizational design5.5 Lateral moves6. Multiple assessments and assessors7. Improved self assessment8. Planned exits© Vince Kellen 14
  15. 15. Person First, Role Second , Why are you here on this earth? • Just sucking up oxygen? Or are you doing something meaningful? • Cows alongside a barn… Get deeper • Recruit the right people based on level of motivation, capacity to learn quickly, demonstrated high expertise or capacity for high expertise development • Over time, understand the person’s passion and life mission. Provide coaches who can help shape their life mission A person who knows why they are here on this earth and placed rightly in an organization behaves differently than a person confused as to why they are here on this earth and placed wrongly in an organization© Vince Kellen 15
  16. 16. Why are y y you here? What What you are you can passion be the about best at What the world How does Good spot to be? needs now one find their place? 16© Vince Kellen
  17. 17. Passion Inventories, Learning Plans , g See last year’s presentation S t the passionate person Spot th i t • Watch what they do with their free time • Watch their level of work activity. More hours may indicate more passion • See what they proudly display • Hear what the commonly talk about y • Check their education history, current activity • Look for level of attainment and commitment • See if they engage in long term skill development activities long-term Passion can change over time. Lifestage and lifestyle changes can affect passion© Vince Kellen 17
  18. 18. Positions and Organizational Structure g Flexible positions • Need job descriptions that are less specific j p p • Need to consider how to handle pay grades and more generic job descriptions • Need to work closely with HR Flexible organizational structure • Need a structure than can change not j g just to dynamic market y conditions, but also to dynamic passion and skill development conditions • Be prepared to alter the structure to fit the p p , versus trying to fit p p people, y g the people into the structure • Change the structure for the right people!© Vince Kellen 18
  19. 19. Lateral Moves Premature upward promotion can kill the careers of promising leaders IT is complex. Rotations across different aspects of IT and business helps new leaders deal with greater complexity Most IT people’s passions lead them to more lateral moves than upward moves. New toys, new technologies, new challenges… Can the organizational structure accommodate lateral moves when the employee’s skill development calls for it? Or do capable people sit waiting and waiting and waiting?© Vince Kellen 19
  20. 20. Multiple Assessments, Multiple Assessors p , p Assessing and shaping people’s passion, life mission and deep expertise is difficult and prone to error • Plan for multiple assessments a few a year perhaps assessments, • Use multiple people to assess. We all have our biases in viewing other people. Have the assessors talk about their biases with each other. Plan for difficult conversations • Miswanting (Gilbert & Wilson) • Inaccurate self assessments – What if they aren’t good at what they want to do? Is it hard to tell them this? • Inaccurate assessor assessments Help people improve their self assessment • Develop cycles of self data collection, self assessment, detection of gaps between data and assessment. Over time, some individuals will get better at detecting their own gaps The story of the “bad” boss about to get fired and how he got ON FIRE…© Vince Kellen 20
  21. 21. Planned Exits If you want a good fireplace, you need a good chimney If passion and skill will t k someone outside th organization, i d kill ill take t id the i ti don’t fear it, celebrate it The next great passionate person will look forward to this person’s exit. It may represent an opportunity Develop a plan for how the person will exit Failure to do this results in • Hidden agendas, angry departures, decreased motivation for many agendas departures many, disruption, etc. • Some day you may work for this person?© Vince Kellen 21
  22. 22. RightPlacing Requires a Certain Type of Leadership g g q yp p Transformational leadership…James MacGregor Burns, Bernard Bass, and others© Vince Kellen 22
  23. 23. Transformational Leadership Breeding Ground p g What values What values do leaders do followers profess? Gap see in use? The gap between principles (values professed) and practice (values in use) gives rise to tension. Transformational leaders close the gap.© Vince Kellen 23
  24. 24. Breaking Transformational Leadership Down g p Idealized influence (II) • Leaders behave as role models that followers wish to emulate • Leaders are admired, respected, trusted with high moral/ethical conduct, are consistent rather than arbitrary • Followers believe leaders to have persistence, determination, extraordinary abilities • Leaders are willing to take risks Inspirational motivation (IM) • Leaders behave in ways that motivate and inspire those around them y p • Leaders arouse team spirit • Leaders get followers involved in envisioning attractive future states • Leaders demonstrate commitment to goals Intellectual stimulation (IS) • Leaders stimulate followers efforts to be innovative and creative by questioning assumptions and reframing problems and looking at old situations in new ways • No public criticism of individual member’s mistakes • Leaders solicit new ideas and creative solutions from followers, who are included in the process Individual Consideration (IC) • Leaders pay special attention to each individual follower’s needs for achievement and growth • Leaders act as coaches or mentors • Followers and peers are developed to successively higher levels of p p p y g potential • Individual consideration is practiced when new learning opportunities are created • Leader’s behavior demonstrates acceptance of individual differences in followers© Vince Kellen 24
  25. 25. Other Leadership Styles p y Contingent reward (CR) • Leader assigns or obtains follower agreement on what needs to be done with promised or actual rewards offered in exchange • Rewards can be transactional (e.g., bonus) or transformational (recognition, praise) Management by exception (MBE) • Can be active (MBE-A) or passive (MBE-P) • In active MBE, leader arranges to monitor potential deviances from standards, mistakes or errors in follower assignments and takes corrective action (e.g., action in anticipation of deviances) ) • MBE-P implies leaders waiting passively for deviances or errors first and then taking action (e.g., only action after a complaint) Laissez faire Laissez-faire (LF) • LF is the avoidance or absence of leadership • Necessary decisions are not made • Leadership responsibilities are ignored • Authority remains unused© Vince Kellen 25
  26. 26. Full Range of Leadership Styles g p y Effective The 4 I’s (II, IM, IS, IC) CR Passive MBE-A Active MBE-P LF Transformational Leadership, Bernard Bass, Ronald Riggio. 2005. Ineffective© Vince Kellen 26
  27. 27. Transformational Leadership Implications p p RightPlacing frequently means personal transformation. Leaders need to be aware of their role in effecting transformation For IT people, intellectual stimulation is relatively natural. Idealized influence, inspirational motivation, and individual consideration sometimes take work • This requires continual feedback and review of their leadership behavior • Feedback is difficult at first. Be prepared for pushback – Story of a “better assignment” taken as a “demotion” L d Leadership can b i hi be improved d • External programs, mentors and coaches can help • These skills become critical for assisting in helping to place people correctly© Vince Kellen
  28. 28. Preconditions, Impediments , p Preconditions • A supportive enterprise culture, HR department pp p p • Experienced, mature management interested in helping others • Time Impediments • Lack of trust • Insufficient time • Overly rigid, “defensive” HR practices • Relentless, mindless reorganizations© Vince Kellen
  29. 29. Summarizing…S i i© Vince Kellen
  30. 30. Productivity y Team ++ Expertise Team Expertise =BenefitB fit Superior ++ Passion Solution ++ Passion/role alignment ++ Team/passion ensemble ++ Team self-assessment Can individuals and teams accept being average? p g g 0 ++ Cost© Vince Kellen 30
  31. 31. Balance Being B i confident th t you fid t that are in the right place at the right time helps you navigate turbulence© Vince Kellen
  32. 32. Impact p Mastery lies in aligning aspiration, aspiration individuals and organizations© Vince Kellen 32
  33. 33. Questions?Vince Kellenvkellen@cutter.com© Vince Kellen