A good leader from Google
Is a good mentor
The study of the work of managers at Google has proved that the distinguishing feature of the most successful mentor is the ability to admonish their subordinates. This concerns not onlyexecutives. For example, many athletes certainly can tell you about how the coach has changed their lives, has made them believe in themselves and reveal their potential. Any leader can become a valuable mentor if he focuses on the needs of each member of his team. At the same time, the style of mentoring can change (for example, some employee need technical advice, while others need just to talk about his work).
Performing the role of a mentor, a manager should:
To meet each member of his team personally on a regular basis to be aware of all his affairs.
To remember that the employee's way of thinking can differ from the manager's way of thinking.
To listen attentively to the interlocutor and ask open-ended questions to fully understand his point of view.
To provide specific and timely feedback.
To recognize the strengths and weaknesses of the employee, provide both positive (motivational) and negative (constructive) feedback.
GROW is a simple mentoring model developed in the UK and successfully used by Google to train managers. The model focuses on the change of styles depending on the object's needs. In general, the GROW model will be effective if:
Member of the team (employee)
assumes responsibility for himself;
is able to conduct a two-way discussion;
is ready to propose ways of solving the problem;
can retreat in time and allows the employee to take the next step by himself.
A simple model for instructing employees:
(Goal) What do you need?
(Reality) What is really happening?
(Options) What could be done?
(Intention) What will you do?
Tool: Effective personal conversations
The study as part of the «Oxygen»project has proved that successful managers more often conduct personal meetings with the employees than their colleagues. Of course, frequent face-to-face meetings take a long time, but they help to identify possible problems at an early stage and allow to give instructions or advice in time. The best executives from Google believe that to conduct effective personal meetings it is necessary:
- Make out a schedule.
- Once a 1-2 weeks, allocate 30-60 minutes for a meeting with each employee.
- Do not use convention hall or your room for the meetings.
Define the topic of the conversation
Create a common document and note in it topics of the conversations, so that your meetings have a clear structure. Proposals for the topics should come from both sides.
You can discuss:
Common questions ("How can I help you?", "What causes the greatest difficulties?")
Specific business issues
Change of goals
Organizational issues (leave or delivery of a report)
Terms and methods for solving problems
Directions for the career development
Arriving at the meeting:
Do not be late.
Stick to the prepared plan, if possible.
Give to your interlocutor maximum attention.
Ask the employee: "Can I do something else for you?" or "Should I put more effort into solving your problem?"
Document the results and discuss the changes at the next meeting.
- Ask yourself: "And what's next?" Often the most intelligent thoughts are belated.