“Going under”

By Dan McCarthy via http://www.greatleadershipbydan.com   Article

The Perils of “Going Under” Your Manager’s Head

“Most of us know what it means to “go over your manager’s head.” … Yes, companies like to say that they have an “open door policy,” but in reality, going up the ladder is a risky move. … … what about the perils of “going under a manager’s head”? …

Manager Charlie is a regional sales manager, with six district managers reporting to him. Charlie likes to get out in the field and “manage by walking around,” making frequent unannounced visits to each of his district offices and having informal conversations with the sales reps. Charlie will ask the reps how things are going, and if they bring up a problem or opportunity, he’ll quick to take action. He’ll make a list, and at the end of the day, start firing off e-mails.

The sales reps love Charlie! He cares about them, listens to their concerns or ideas, and has the clout to make things happen. So what’s wrong with this scenario? Nothing, unless you happen be one of the poor district sales managers reporting to Charlie. … he’sundermining his managers’ authority …

By all means, get out of your office and spend time in the field, asking questions and listening to those on the front lines and on the shop floor. Just don’t make promises without consulting with your management team. Ask them if they have spoken to their own boss, and if not, encourage them to do so. Make a note, and if it’s OK with the person, let them know you’ll be reviewing their concern or idea with their boss as well.

Take your list to your management team and discuss with them. Once you have all of the facts, let the person’s manager be the one to follow-up. Then, follow up with the manager to make sure that they have followed up.”



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