Thursday, May 29, 2008

Growing Middle Management into our company

As founders, shareholders and managers of our current business we have an obligation to look for short-term growth but also for mid and long-term sustainability. For both objectives it is fundamental to acquire, retain and grow our middle management structure.

Likely we will find that we have the capability and attractiveness to hire even more experienced/older people than the current management team which could give management different views, experiences and also challenge our opinions and strategy. In my view constructive challenge is the best way to improve strategies and many times you find that for new people is easier to ask “Why we do that or why we do that thing such way”, which is the beginning of thinking about what we do and why we do it and see if there are different or better ways to approach the future

Lately we have hired 3 people with such profile. Experienced, older than the current management and eager and attracted by our culture, future and way of working while having fun.
Now we need to make sure we create an environment where middle management can grow and find themselves useful and bringing value to the business.
As one of them put it to me over coffee last week “There are the magic four (aka the owners and management team) and the rest and this was fine for the business until now but in the future it needs to be different”. From now on it is necessary that the magic four not become the magic secretive four (where all business decisions are taking by us four in a room)”. This is key, as we need to open up business decision making to the new managers on their respective areas. Obviously there will still be upper management decisions but when that is the case we should be able to communicate openly (which we do already) but probably more often about such decisions. This will allow the business to grow and offer scalability as more activities and decisions can be made on any given time and keep senior and capable middle management motivated and eager to stay within the mmC family

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