Let us continue our article on regular management as well as the comparison with a child cleaning his room
Principle #5. Broad interpretation of a given task is not acceptable.
In other words, if the task is to vacuum the room, the child vacuums the room – no shifting outside the given task is allowed. You would ask, “And what about being proactive and employee development?”. My reply is that if your goal is employee development, then you set the task in a way that encourages the employee’s initiative. Ideally, the famous phrase “Everything which is not explicitly forbidden is allowed” should be replaced by the phrase “Everything which is not allowed is forbidden,” and build it into this principle. Everything in the task which is not clear with regard to how to implement should be viewed as an obstacle to be timely reported to the management.
So let’s say that the child notices that a part of his room wall is dirty. He doesn’t touch it, but reports the problem to “management.” He goes on and recalls that the parents asked him to change the cloth after each large piece of furniture. Yet after some thinking, he decides, “I will use one cloth for everything, there’s no difference.” And he continues. The “management” (mom and dad) are curious about that. The consequence is a “feedback session” and another session of cleaning. Why is it so? Because the boy didn’t know our next principle:
Principle #6. Disagreement with the task parameters or performance procedure cannot be a reason for ignoring them.
So our long-suffering child, having cleaned the room, goes to his parents and asks, “May I clean my bed later?” The parents reasonably ask him, “Why?” “Because I’m tired and there’s a lot of time till evening. Now I would like to lie down for a while and then do it.” And they start to exchange words: “First finish the job, and then go.” The boy replies, “But you didn't tell to finish everything right now.” A familiar story?
Thus, we have the final principle:
Principle #7. Facts and arguments are preferable to opinions.
So, we have reviewed all 7 main principles. Just to finish the story, I should say that the boy successfully cleaned his room and everyone was happy. The advocates of proper upbringing of children may start casting stones at me, saying that one should support children, not scold them. Support them in everything, let them show initiative, and so on. I don’t want to argue. My goal was not to teach you how to bring up children but to show through an example how to work with employees and what the “principles of regular management” are.
Hope I managed to do that. Implementing these principles is a subject of a separate discussion.