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Why People are Not Your Greatest Asset

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, September 26, 2011

The problem with this mindset is that most employees are far more impacted by day-to-day contact with their immediate supervisors than by the occasional company-wide email or mass-distributed Christmas card from the CEO.

Employees today are better educated, more sophisticated, and more demanding of their work experience. “They won’t tolerate micromanagers or leadership abuse or favoritism or all the stuff our parents’ generation had to put up with in the corporate world,” Davenport says. “Organizations will have to respond.”


John Commins is a senior editor with HealthLeaders Media.

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2 comments on "Why People are Not Your Greatest Asset"


R Daniel King (9/29/2011 at 9:04 AM)
I disagree with Davenport that today's worker is "better educated, more sophisticated, and more demanding of their work experience." How are the products of a K-12 public educational system that [INVALID]ped from first in the World in 1960 to 24th today and [INVALID]ping "better educated?" It may apply for less than 10% of these graduates but the remaining will need extensive education and constant management to address their lack of education, self-esteem, and work ethic. If Davenport defines "sophisticated" as being exposed to more countries, states, cities, commercial events, sex, immorality, violence, selfishness, cheating, lying, dysfunctional families, entitlements, and the soft discrimination of lower expectations then I agree. But, collectively these are major challenges of the management level Davenport references that need to "manage the environment." If Davenport defines "demanding of their work experience" as a sense they are entitled to work on their on schedule, at their own pace, in their own manner be damn for outcomes, quality, efficiency or impact on other individuals and departments then I agree. Davenport is right on achieving the right environment but it is only achieved through effectively managing an increasing dysfunctional, morally challenged, pseudo-educated workforce. What Davenport has not recognized is there are two contrasting environments that impact organizational culture: accountable and political. The contrast between the two is an accountable environment is where individuals utilize political skills to achieve universal accountability starting with senior leadership. Whereas, in a political environment individuals utilize political skills to avoid accountability for the politically protected and deflect it to the politically isolated. Government, Wall Street, education and health care are all posted boards for the decaying impact of a predominantly political environment.

svbellistri (9/28/2011 at 9:07 AM)
Much of what the artical states has some bearing in the healthcare environment. My thought is that there has been an evolution in management direction and staff motivation. Executives and managers need to realize that one style does not fit all. Our employees are our experts and they can be the solution and the advancment needed in healthcare to obtain better outcomes.