Up (the) management

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Many of those within management consider it a failing to accept comment and observation, let alone constructive criticism, from any of their team members beneath them. It is a trait all too common in today’s police service, despite all the management hot air suggesting the contrary.

There was a time when the police was an organisation which operated under a kind of yes sir, no sir three bags full Sir management style. An ethos where if you were if told to “jump” you simply asked “how high sir?” Many would suggest that style is historical and has slipped into the history books. Most modern managers within the service would seek to have you believe they are team players, interested in your input, valuing your contribution and operating an open door policy. All great stuff, but only applicable when your opinion actually matches theirs.

The problem today is that you need a kind of sixth sense. Your energy is constantly sapped trying to understand what your management want or are trying to achieve. Do they actually believe what they say? Are they going to follow through with what they say? Are the promises they make actually going to be delivered? Because of all this, there is also a constant need to manage up as well as down…

Edge online* – Managing up: It might seem unnatural to manage those above you in the top-down world of business, but mastering this skill is exactly what you must do to excel in any organisation… (Read more)

At least with old school management tactics, irrespective of the pompous and archaic style, you always knew exactly where you stood… Today’s failures often revolve around poor communication, lack of honesty, or any attempt at fostering trust. Is it any wonder officers are continually scream about working one up the management?

* Published by the Institute of Leadership & Management, Edge is the UK’s most widely read magazine devoted to leadership and management.

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