Sunday, May 22, 2011

Leading or Bossing?

I have heard and read numerous times that rules without relationship leads to rebellion. I certainly agree with that whether the context is the workplace, the school building or the classroom. The area of specific concern for us is the school building which also happens to be the workplace. I came across a quote recently by Mary Parker Follett that lends some credence to this mindset. Follett once said, "The test of a [manager] is not how good he is at bossing but how little bossing he has to do."

That's a pretty powerful statement. Also powerful is what Follett doesn't say but rather implies: without some level of established relationship between boss and subordinates (for lack of better terms), bossing becomes the default mode of management and/or leadership. However, this presents an interesting dilemma for managers, supervisors, division heads and heads of school: how far can one take a relationship with those who work with him and for him before the relationship becomes unhealthy? I'll explore this a little in my next post.

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