Flutterby™! : My management style

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My management style

2007-07-11 04:33:05.617355+00 by Dan Lyke 10 comments

I've written and deleted one entry here on this, but... anyone with insights into my abilities to manage and guide people, and how my personality might mesh with a job that required no programming, please email me. I'm doing a little self-examination.

[ related topics: Dan's Life Psychology, Psychiatry and Personality Software Engineering ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2007-07-11 12:56:38.028134+00 by: ebradway

Throw out the idea that manager = whip cracker. You'll never be a good manager in that style - it's just not you.

Think about manager as leader in the sense that you're someone people might WANT to follow. Do a little self-examination and put a little emphasis on those aspects of your life other people find inspiring.

Here are some personal examples - things that I felt inspired enough to mimic from you:

  1. You use non-offensive phrases instead of vulgarity (like Fudge! or Shucks!). You do it well - in a way that clearly says "I don't want to sound like a potty mouth."
  2. You come to work early and try to leave at a decent hour. This one was hard for me to accept at 21 - but I started coming in earlier (and going to bed earlier).
  3. You have an awesome work ethic that's contagious. It was much harder for me to pack up and go home when I knew you were still pounding away down the hall. And your focus is amazing.
  4. You are one of the smartest people I've ever known - but you aren't at all condescending about it. Whenever I came to you with a problem, I would come away thinking "How could I have come to that solution without having to go to Dan?" Not that I felt I bothered you but the solutions were usually simple enough and I valued your time enough that I took it upon myself to strive to emulate your thought patterns more.

The only thing I'd suggest is to allow yourself to invest in good clothes. Something I've learned over the years is that, even in the most casual shops, the way you dress can reflect on how other people perceive how you value the company. You don't need to wear a suit but pressed pants without holes and a nice shirt (even a polo) matched with good shoes creates an atmosphere of "I care at least a little about how others perceive me" and that's more of what management is about.

On that note, when I've been in more of management positions in the past, I've "allowed" myself luxuries like buying nice shoes, keeping a running account at the dry cleaners, spending a little more at the hairdresser (they do beards as well, you know!).

So yeah, you're a leader in the manner of real leaders. Just allow emphasis on those qualities and the rest will just happen.

#Comment Re: made: 2007-07-12 15:57:26.463669+00 by: Dan Lyke

Oh, I should be careful of what I ask for....

#Comment Re: made: 2007-07-12 16:48:01.649203+00 by: meuon

Dan Lyke's Management Style:

Management by Example. Mentorship, Leading from behind ( this is a hard thing ).

One of the things I most respect about Dan is his ability to interface and work with people with VERY different belief systems and styles productively.

And, I got a crunch this afternoon, big essay is coming, but as this relates to other topics let me summarize as saying: Things that have real worth usually realize that worth in relatively short periods of time (1-2 years max). If the value of something is not realized in that time period: ie: people pay real money for it. Products or people.. doesn't matter.

Your management abilities are not your strong point, you don't have an MBA in ________ management. You don't know that things aren't supposed to work the way they sometimes do work, very well. You are Dan Lyke, You have a doctorate/PHD/etc.. in being Dan Lyke and Dan Lyke is a profound intense thinker about everything he does. He not only knows "bullshit", but he's the kind of person that points it out and gets it cleaned up.

#Comment Re: made: 2007-07-12 18:31:35.275424+00 by: topspin

Two rhetorical considerations and a rhetorical comment:

First, I'd invite you, Dan, to think about your forays into "parenting" with various people, young and old. I recall your struggles with Forrest. I recall your stories of being the adult in the life of a young girl, whose name I don't recall. You've reveled and reviled such situations, I think, and I believe you'd find the same true with a management position. Certainly, however, those experiences should provide some personal insight into how you feel you can manage people.

Second, I'm not sure, but I suspect your programming skills to be exceptional. I'd suspect your ability to handle complex programming tasks is kept sharp by the fact that you use those skills regularly. One must consider the longterm effect on those skills if you move in another direction besides programming. Basically, how much of your "bread and butter" skills would rust and could you rekindle them if needed?

You're friggin' gifted Dan. You've got lots of gray matter and it works. You could learn to manage people as well as anyone. It's a given. I'm reminded of a quote I heard about Sir Laurence Olivier: "I'd rather be treated by Olivier portraying a doctor, than by most doctors I know." I suspect I'd rather be managed by Dan portraying a manager than most managers I've had.

#Comment Re: made: 2007-07-12 19:04:57.653152+00 by: jeff [edit history]

Dan--when I think of the introspection which may be occuring here, it reminds me of Dr. Wayne Dyer and a pragmatic example of "The Power of Intention."

"Intention" is one of the most powerful words in the Universe. What you "really want to" do should drive your "intention" and "subsequent actions."

#Comment Re: made: 2007-07-13 00:13:58.9117+00 by: Larry Burton

Dan, you don't manage, you lead. There is a huge difference. The one thing I've always admired about you is that you have an ability to attract a diverse crowd of people and influence them to work together for a common cause. You don't do that through management, that comes through leadership. You also don't do that unless you are grounded in principles.

#Comment Re: made: 2007-07-13 14:59:21.911843+00 by: markd [edit history]

I've enjoyed the writings over at Rands in Repose. (yes, the Rands from Jerk City). I'm not a manager, and hope to every god out there that I don't, so Rands may be smoking his socks and I wouldn't realize it; but a lot of what he writes makes sense to me.

#Comment Re: made: 2007-07-16 22:53:15.908999+00 by: Dylan_forgot_his_old_logon

#Comment Re: made: 2007-07-16 22:57:37.244909+00 by: Dylan_forgot_his_old_logon

I'd have to say that since you were sort of maybe not quite but mostly at least partly my boss for a while, I'm something of an authority...most of it's been said, but here were the big boni of working with/for you:

  1. Fudging crazy smart. Very, very, very few people make me feel slow. But as mentioned above...I never felt bad about it, just "man, it's so nice having a brain like that to tap"
  2. You're genuine and honest without being a prick (I, on the other hand, am merely genuine and honest). You will tell somebody straight out if the direction they're going is ill-advised, and you won't make them feel stupid for it.
  3. You inspired me to come up with things I wouldn't have otherwise because you so often dropped a single sentence that made me see things from a completely new angle.

You made going to work something to look forward to, and I'm quite sure you'd be very good at doing a bit more managing.

What I'm not so sure of is that you'll be able to stand rising above the fray and doing little to no hacking.

#Comment Re: made: 2007-07-16 23:23:25.536633+00 by: Dan Lyke

Thanks for the feedback, y'all.

I've been considering a role offered by a long-time friend and Flutterby reader, there are a number of pro and con issues in looking at it, but one of the things it would involve is being in a clearly management role, and one of the concerns that both of us have is how I'd fit into that place. It's funny that many of the issues that this has brought up may be addressed by the offer because even before we've started negotiating the details I'm having to come to grips with some of the issues of setting down boundaries that I know I've got.

Oh, and Dylan, while we're playing mutual admiration here, I have a deep respect for everyone who's said something in this thread, but you top out the "scary ass potential that isn't tapped" category. I understand a lot of the things that have kept you from tapping into that (some of 'em are remarkably similar to the reasons I haven't gotten all the places in my life that I've wanted to get, especially given that our life experiences and histories are so incredibly different), but someday I really really hope that you managed to find whatever "it" is.

Perhaps partially 'cause that gives me hope for myself [grin].