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All managers are teachers, too

Today is Teacher’s day in India. We pay respect, homage and tributes to our living and dead teachers who have shaped our lives and helped us in making us reach, where we are today. Most people remember school and college teachers and some, of course, remember people who shaped their destiny with their support and leadership. Those might be their parents, seniors in school/college/work, celebrities, authors and even their neighbours or anyone known to them.

A leader or a manager in the corporate world is also, actually a teacher who guides or “should guide” their subordinates. People learn from their teachers in two ways – either by listening and/or by observing. The employees also look up to the manager in the initial stages in a similar fashion as the students do in school. The manager has to be attentive in what they speak and what they do. The teachers mostly, teach from a textbook of prescribed courses and do not tell the students anything negative about the book, unless there is a critical study class going on. They will, of course, expand on those texts till the students understand and their doubts are clarified. Similarly, the managers also have to make the subordinates understand the policies and processes of the company. The managers also have the right to discuss negative policies in appropriate management meetings.

Similarly, it is the job of managers to teach the prescribed policies, plans and processes of the company as laid down in their QMS to the subordinates and clarify to them as and when doubts are raised. This is only possible when the managers are aligned with those policies themselves and believe them to be correct. This brings us to the vision and mission of the company to which, everyone must pay allegiance. For example, we go to school or college to learn and we accept that the teachers have the knowledge and we can learn there. If we have the objective of learning, we do good in the exam and come out with high marks, whereas the people whose objective is to just pass the time in school, perform lower than the first lot with the learning objective.

Like teachers in schools, some of whom are liked and some not, every organization has managers, some of whom are liked and some not. If the managers can start taking their roles as the building of life of their subordinates, in addition to just their individual professional roles and responsibilities, they are more likely to be effective and liked. It will also make them better human beings, which is the core on which a good business culture stands.

If on the teacher’s day, the top management can impress upon the younger managers to bring out the teachers inside them, the business culture and the environment of the enterprises have the potential to be highly effective and productive.

And this brings us to the point where the top management has to search inside themselves, whether they believe in the maximization of profit alone or making the lives of their subordinates better, also. The answer will decide the culture of the company.

(Note – People who like to study, can go through the book #searchinsideyourself by #chademengtan to know how to do this search).

Let s focus on #makingworkplaceshappier. Wishing all of you a Happy Teacher’s Day!!

photo - @Immo Wegmann

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