Saturday, February 20, 2010

Management 101: Elephant Handling

Throwing The Elephant: Zen & The Art Of Managing Up
by Stanley Bing

Fortune magazine columnist Stanley Bing process-maps an effective strategy on how to manage your boss.

Elephants are powerful or they aren't elephants. Elephants regularly see whatever happens to them as an equity or blessing, suddenly realizing that something was the best thing that could happen for them.

Elephants have an uncanny ability to see almost everything happening for them, not to them. They often simply do not see things that aren't serving them in that very moment. Forgive them, they see not what they do. Being angry at an elephant is like being angry at the ice caps for melting, it does nothing constructive and doesn't change what's happening.

If you have a patron, you have an elephant. If there is a room full of people and you can't spot the elephant, it's you. You are likely more of an elephant than you give yourself credit for. Bing writes, "That you are willing and able to do actual work gives you incredible power over a creature that by no means wishes to ... do any."

Unless you suffer from The Curse of The Competent and you feel morally obliged to always be working, this book will help you get powerful people to champion you. This is not a get-rich-quick book, but a book on how to manage a boss or patron.

1 comment:

LoudMac said...

Can we agree that this is remarkably profound and liberating brain food disguised as a satirical "quick read"?

It's written in the language of corporate America, but speaks equally to the clever entrepreneur.

We ALL have our elephants. And the art of elephant handling pays large and frequent dividends.

Good call, my friend.