June 8, 2009

Monday Blues: Mirror Never Lies

Posted by Bizaholic | 7:00 AM | with 0 comments »

In corporate world, one often comes across people who can blame everything on external factors. Come what may, they are least willing to look internally to find the cause of a problem. The feeling is that they are always right and if anything goes wrong, it must be because of some external factors. Sometimes this tendency is so deep rooted in an organization that it affects the entire culture.

The problem with these people is that they don't like to look into the mirror because the mirror never lies. When you look into the mirror you don't see what you like to see and you see only what the reality is. Looking into the mirror could be disarming for people adept at passing the bucks away from them. Facing the reality and owning up things are not for a weak hearted person.

Let's take recruitment of management trainees. Many companies recruit management trainees but only few excel at retaining and grooming these trainees for key management positions. Why only few companies excel at the art of managing management trainees? Because the management of these companies take it upon themselves to ensure the success of these trainees and are accountable for the quality of output. And why most of the companies fail with their management trainee program? Because at the end of the day they have the luxury to pass the buck and say that management trainees are not good enough! But who interviewed these trainees in the first place? The very people who assert later on that the quality is not good enough! Now, if you look into the mirror, you don't start with the premise that management trainees are not good enough. You own things up and say that you didn't manage the trainees well enough. Looking into the mirror may show you that perhaps you didn't train the trainees well, or you failed to give them good exposure to learn the ropes, or if indeed quality of management trainee is not up to the mark, you messed up the recruitment process. But in no way you would blame the management trainees for the debacle.

Looking into the mirror makes you own up things resulting from your decisions. This attitude not only helps in developing high level of responsibility and accountability among the people but also helps build the character of an organization. By helping its people learn to face the mirror, an organization can develop a healthy environment of integrity, accountability, and trust that creates high potential leaders.