Aim for excellence in your managerial practices

N°245b – Synopsis (8p.) – Learning
Aim for excellence in your managerial practices
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How can you find the right combination of the various components that constitute the quality of managerial practices? Following Google’s example, you can take inspiration from methods used in operational excellence and experimental science.

The principles of operational excellence have been used to generate significant performance improvements in many fields. Major strides have been made through the application of continuous improvement methods to strategies and processes. Most companies, however, apply these methods only to their core business, whether to optimize productivity, cost control or the commercial strategy.

Very few business organizations realize that they would have a lot to gain from implementing these principles in the field of management. This trend is on the rise, however. Young companies, for the most part, particularly in Silicon Valley, have been the first to experiment with scientifically-based management approaches. For example, Google calls its HR department “People Operations,” to underline that it is no longer a support function, but rather an operational function. It is also a place for experimenting, assessing and deploying best management practices. A third of Google’s HR organization is thus composed of social scientists with expertise in quantitative and qualitative data analysis methods. They comb through scientific publications to identify studies highlighting motivation drivers, learning methods or forms of recognition that seem promising. They then design tests to evaluate how the organization can take advantage of these discoveries and integrate them optimally into its managerial practices.

Many companies would greatly benefit by taking inspiration from such approaches. There is often a lot of potential to improve their managerial practices! Now, these practices have great impact on the job satisfaction of employees, which in turn influences their motivation, and ultimately, their performance.

Nevertheless, implementing such approaches requires real culture change and new reflexes. Managers and HR professionals must rethink their approach, in a mindset of continuous improvement. Where intuition and empirical experience used to predominate, companies must now adopt rigorous practices to formulate hypotheses, develop tests and define measurements—with, as a result, a step towards excellence in their managerial practices!

In this synopsis:
- Attain excellence through “deliberate practice”
- Take inspiration from Google to optimize your managerial practices
- Adopt a scientific approach in your management methods

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