It’s time to re-frame the conversation.

One of the trends I noted in an earlier post is the concept of “managing up.”

The mass organizational restructuring happening in our country is bringing about significant changes in management supervision. Tenured individuals raised in a specific culture of an organization are being replaced with younger, better educated individuals, who have neither an understanding of the culture of a company, or the level of experiential knowledge necessary to manage subordinates effectively. This creates the need for subordinates to learn how to “manage up” if they are going to survive these organizational changes.

Very few managers and leaders at the higher levels in an organization handle challenges from subordinates very well. There are always issues of ego, insecurity, crisis, and lack of leadership ability that seem to get in the way. Unless there is a very strong organizational culture of change, risk, and an understanding of real servant-leadership in place, challenging the status quo can be very hazardous for subordinates. Hence, the need for an understanding by those subordinates of how to “manage up.”

Re-framing the conversation is being able to challenge supervision in a way that creates a collaborative environment rather than a confrontational one.

Truth Be Told, it’s a skill set that can be learned and it’s one that can be trained across the business model.

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Written by Maxie Carpenter

Maxie Carpenter was formerly Vice President of HR & Talent Development for Wal-Mart Stores. After a 27-year career, he began to pursue a number of other interests, which included alternative education, nonprofits, consulting, writing and public speaking.
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