Models Drive Diagnosis and Cure – Are You Committing Organizational Malpractice?

By Michelle Malay Carter on July 7, 2008 

Organizational Malpractice is RampantLast week, I listed ten requisite managerial leadership behaviors (below)?from the Requisite Organization model.?

-Two way managerial teamworking
-Context setting
-Task assignment
-Personal effectiveness appraisal of direct reports
-Merit review
-Selection and induction
-Deselection and dismissal
-Continuous improvement

Systems Drive Behavior – Check Here First
Assuming your leadership system is designed to elucidate, authorize, reinforce, control and audit these leadership expectations, what are your options when a manager is not leading?

Prevailing wisdom, in order of escalation,?is to coach them, send them to training, threaten them, then give the a pejorative label and fire them.

A Diagnostic Model
If we really understood work and human capability to perform work, we would have a much better diagnostic model to use.? At PeopleFit, we have a three point model we use after verifying that the greater system is not driving unintended behaviors.

Using the model, the questioning process becomes:??

  1. Can s/he do them??
  2. Could s/he do them??
  3. Will s/he do them?

If s/he can’t (due to lack of skill or knowledge), training is in order.

If s/he couldn’t (due to insufficient cognitive capacity relative to direct reports), reassignment to a different level of work?is in order.

If s/he won’t (due to disinterest in managerial work), reassignment to a non-managerial role is in order.

Models Drive Diagnosis and Cure
Your model for what “causes” capability and effectiveness will influence your diagnostic?process and your recommended “cure”.?

Bloodletting?was driven by the theory of the four humours, which espoused that a mystical equilibrium between several bodily fluids maintains human life.? Given this theory, bloodletting made sense, pass the knife.

Organizational Malpractice
Noble intentions aside, when was the last time you questioned your model?? What values and beliefs is it built upon?? Is there any science behind it?

If you trace them backwards to their roots, most current models imply that inherent?personal flaws drive ineffectiveness.? These models, in turn, drive all forms of organizational malpractice which are?imposed upon employees.??Nearly all of the?time, inherent personal flaws are not the cause of disengagement or ineffectiveness.

I’m OK.? You’re OK.? Let’s fix the system.

Have you ever been misdiagnosed?

Filed Under Corporate Values, Employee Engagement, Executive Leadership, Requisite Organization, Talent Management, Work Levels


2 Responses to “Models Drive Diagnosis and Cure – Are You Committing Organizational Malpractice?”

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    […] or even left to default.? Day in and day out, employees’ souls are damaged at the hands of dysfunctional “people” systems.? We have created huge populations of working-wounded, and the societal costs are […]

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