Thursday, May 25, 2006

Warm and Fuzzies

Without going into any details whatsoever, it’s good when someone is willing to go to bat for you. Sometimes, even in an office environment, where people are supposed to be professional, tempers flare up, and jealousies rage, and peoples’ personalities get in the way of doing their jobs. And in those situations, it’s sometimes hard to be professional. Or, worse yet, you can be professional, but others will take advantage of you behind the scenes, and try to make you look bad.

And every once in a while, someone will maintain a cool head, and stand up for the people working under them. “Hey”, they’ll say, “that person works for me. If you have a problem with them, please talk to me. This isn’t their fault, they’re just dealing with the situation like everyone else.”

In my mind, one of the marks of a good manager is the ability to sort through the politics of an organization/situation, and praise people when they need to be praised, and criticize people when they need to be criticized. (And, just as importantly, to be able to do the criticizing properly, meaning constructively and not hurtfully.) A good manager can also shield the people under them from the politics they don’t need to be involved in.