It’s somewhat ironic that I waxed on and on about jobs I have held for only a few years during my last few posts, and now I find the lesson I took away from the job I held the longest – 10 years as a matter of fact – is actually the most succinct.
It was at this job, with an electric utility in Indiana, that I had the good fortune to work for a guy who is, hands-down, the best boss I had in my career. These are the top 5 things I learned from him, lessons I applied as a manager and that I now apply as a consultant and management coach:
- If you have a productive team who are good at what they do, set clear goals and get out of the way.
- It is a manager’s job to make sure his/her team has everything they need to get their jobs done.
- Let your team show their brilliance directly to the big boss but buffer them when the big boss has an issue.
- Be honest, even if the truth isn’t pretty. (People know when you’re full of it.)
- Laugh loudly, laugh often and laugh mostly at yourself.
Cheers to you, Chris Rettig!
Post Script: Now that the new year is upon us, I am going to move away from my past-career retrospective and toward posts that examine ways to make work work better for everyone. I am currently collecting stories of workplace stress and struggle to help me build my posts. If you have a story to share, send it to me and see what transpires. (All stories will be shared anonymously to protect the innocent and guilty alike.)