Friday, May 22, 2009
I had a young Manager Trainee whose first assignment was as a member of a project team that was charged with designing a new product. One day the project manager came to me to complain that this trainee was difficult because he would sometime disagree with the consensous of the team. I asked the manager if the trainee would work toward the next goal after voicing his opinion: even though, he disagreed. The manager said he did. I made it a point to sit in on a few of the team's meetings. On one occasion I made a suggestion concerning changing a feature of the product. Everyone agreed with my suggestion except for the Trainee. I asked why and he explained that originally he had disagreed with this feature but the team adopted it. He said that as it turned out the team was correct and the product feature was imperative to the success of the product. He went on to explain his thinking and he was right. I thought how interesting! I made a suggestion that everyone should have disagreed with (given the history) but the person who did disagree had changed his mind and supported the team decision. When I spoke with the trainee later I commented on how impressed I was with his BRAVERY. He was surprised. He did not feel he was BRAVE. He felt it was his responsibility to be CANDID and steadfast in his opinion. I learned something that day. BEING RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR ACTIONS IS REQUIRED FOR SUCCESS and it can be misconstrued for BRAVERY! Oh, yea I gave the implementation Assistant Project Managers position to the Manager Trainee( his first management position in a career of successful management). BE BRAVE!!!!