Laura, the medieval manager

The American Management Association has regular email newsletters (with no RSS).  The February Moving Ahead newsletter includes, How to Disagree with Your Boss—and Win.  The article provides familiar advice on being disagreeable in an agreeable way.

A midlevel manager—let’s call her Laura—gets a directive from the boss that she thinks is ill-advised. Laura concludes that the plan won't achieve the desired results. It will increase costs or demoralize employees or cause customer dissatisfaction. Whatever the problem is, Laura is aware that because it’s the boss’s plan, she has to deal with the situation with a degree of sensitivity.

But the funny thing is the first line and my brain.  I read that first line as "A medieval manager..."  And then had to double check myself after reading the rest of the paragraph.

2 Comment(s)

So is this a way of saying you think that such a tactic is old-fashioned? Either I'm reading too much into this post or you're already rolling your eyes and saying "duh!" :) If this post is really about the whole idea being a medieval practice, I think that everything is an "It depends" situation. While some bosses appreciate honesty from their employees, others don't. But should Laura tiptoe around the issue or explain everything outright? I'm not sure.

Jack Vinson Author Profile Page said:

No worries, Jen. I'm laughing that my post is about misreading something and you are struggling in reading my meaning.

What I was _trying_ to say is that I simply misread the word "midlevel" as "medieval."

That said, the rest of the article suggests that Laura take a strategic approach: find out what the boss really needs and propose something that will benefit everyone. Neither medieval or particularly mid-level.

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