Monday, March 17, 2014

HUAW: Think of it as a symptom of deeper problems

An interesting post from the Harvard Business Review blog:

Two Ways to Reduce “Hurry Up and Wait” Syndrome

Intersecting with this drive for speed is the reality that many organizations have slimmed down over the last few years. But while they have reduced costs and taken out layers of managers and staff, they often haven’t eliminated the work that those people were doing. So the surviving managers are expected to do more and more, and do it faster and faster.

The result of trying to drive more work through fewer people, and at greater speed, is a jamming of the queue. There is simply no way to get everything done in the accelerated time frames that many managers expect. So while their intentions are to move quickly on things, the reality is that you can only force so much work through the eye of the needle.
I think HUAW is symptomatic of deeper, systemic problems with in an organization.

Maybe it is the result of the fetishization of speed by a business-manque

Why the hurry?

Most executives, it seems, are only businessmen manqués because their organizations are not really businesses. The lessons of a lifetime do not need to be revised, they need to be tossed aside completely. It is no surprise, then, that many executives recoil when they apprehend this fact. They take refuge in action, connection, and other "irritable mental gestures" as a substitute for hard thinking.
Quite likely, a part of the problem lies in the organization’s refusal to heed the best strategic planning advice ever.

Avoiding HUAW is a useful byproduct of Manstein’s leadership matrix.

When hard work doesn't pay

Leadership, hard work, and meetings
Undoubtedly, a part of the problem is managers who lack the moral courage required for effective delegation.

Ike’s leadership style: Don’t Meddle...delegate or replace

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