Judging people: External vs. Internal

AngryHappy New Year, everybody! 🙂

AnyaWorkSmart is back online and will continue with discussion of every aspect of Management that can be improved by fighting Biases. I decided that the first post of the year should deal with a situation where the negative influence of Biases is most critical – our attempts to judge others based on their appearances and actions. Continue reading

“Can a Non-Expert manage Experts?” – From Ask Anya mails

Ask Anya MailFollowing post : An Eternal Argument: Can a non-Expert manage Experts?

“I read your post carefully and I have to say that I completely disagree. In my experience, any attempt to manage IT developers without also being a technical expert is doomed to failure for several reasons. For one, the developers have no one to talk to if they encounter serious technical problems and need further guidance – non-technical manager cannot provide this guidance by definition. Continue reading

More on Delegation: Micro-management and “Hands-On” Management Style

micro or hands-on managerAfter talking to people about my post on Delegation I decided to expand the discussion to other related issues in Management that everybody knows about, but the general understanding remains vague, preventing fruitful actions. Today I would like to talk about the most frequent complaint of employees about their Managers – them being MicromanagersContinue reading

When to delegate and when to do it yourself

DelegationDelegation is such an integrative part of Management that it seems everything has already been said about it. We all understand its benefits for grooming potential Leads and know how to redistribute the load of responsibility according to people’s natural tendencies.  However, in real world we sometimes find it hard to apply our knowledge for the simple reason that delegation basically means trusting people with important things, and having some actual experience in dealing with employees sometimes makes trust a very rare resource. Continue reading

An Eternal Argument: Can a Non-Expert manage Experts?

you are not an expertCan you put a non-engineer to lead an IT development team? How effective would be a financial product development team when managed by someone who has no previous experience with financial systems? When looking for someone to fill an executive position in an aviation sales department, should you be looking for someone who has more experience with aviation, a better salesman or A BETTER MANAGER?

I think it’s easy to understand what I’m getting at: there is an eternal argument going on in every possible industry – when looking for Managers, should you prefer people from the same industry or people with good managerial skills but without any previous knowledge of the industry. Continue reading

The Other Top Ten posts of AnyaWorkSmart

another top ten After the warm reception that my previous Top Ten post received, I decided to add another one, but this time a little different. As most people do not have the patience to look through archives of the blog for posts that do not contain the easily recognizable keywords for topics of interest, I thought to remind my readers of several posts I published in the past that to my opinion are very important for everyone to know. Continue reading

Top 10 Posts of AnyaWorkSmart: what the readers think and what I think

top 10

The summer is over, the kids are back at school, and it’s a beginning of a new year in some cultures, so I think this is a great time to draw some bottom-lines by discussing the most popular posts of this blog. After all, people read what seems important to them, right?

So let’s see what makes some topics in Management more popular than the others, by looking at the Top Ten posts of AnyaWorkSmart as defined by readers’ views. Continue reading

Working patterns: Why do we constantly create new problems by trying to solve the existing ones? Part 2

dangerous patternThis week we continue to discuss the reasons for why do we make our own life harder by creating new problems when solving the existing ones. Here is what you should be aware of: Continue reading

Working patterns – the way we do things

the way we workA working pattern comes to life when we start doing something systematically and repeatedly. It could be something very basic, such as always reading your morning e-mails with a cup of coffee in hand or something a bit less innocent, such as never providing positive feedback without saying something critical first. The main point here is that every one of us has his or her own way of doing every specific task and this way may differ from how other people approach the same task. Why am I talking about something as obvious as that? Continue reading

Office Politics, Part 3: Hard Power vs. Soft Power

true leaderAfter my previous posts on Office Politics  I got some very interesting reactions from readers. Many of them included the same question: How to be good at Office Politics without getting into unnecessary conflicts? In order to answer this question, we have to understand why engaging in Politics leads to conflicts initially. Continue reading