Is Your Management Style For The Birds?

A feisty seagull has invaded our parking lot and taken us hostage. This foul-tempered fowl squawks, swoops and poops – forcing us to run for cover when entering and exiting the building. In fact, it's so bad that employees use divert-and-run techniques and carry tennis racquets to and from their cars.

But at Brandner, we turn negatives into positives. We chose to use this feathered foe as an opportunity to talk about good business sense.

Consider your company. There are surely times when you feel like you are under attack by outside forces not in your control – whether they be market downturns, demanding customers, or other external issues that ruffle your feathers. But rather than just winging it, you can better manage challenges with good leadership.

Have you heard the term, “seagull management?” This is a management style where leaders frantically interact with the team only when a problem is already upon them. In a humorous illustration, a seagull manager flies in, makes a lot of noise, craps on everything, then flies off again leaving a big mess behind.

Are you a seagull manager? Are you managed by one? Start by taking a bird's eye view of the situation (understanding that we are all afflicted by this management style at times) then look at ways to prevent it:

  • No Squawking – Maintain a steady flow of communication with your team. Communicate effectively, frequently and clearly.
  • No Swooping – Put everyone on the right path from the very beginning with clear expectations, regular performance evaluations and mutually established goals.
  • No Pooping – Don't just dump orders on the team. Offer praise and constructive criticism along all phases of a project. Remember, it's a team effort.

So don't be a bird-brain and let seagull management make a big mess of things. Surround yourself with good eggs, communicate often and your business will soar.

Update: As we post this blog, you will be happy to hear that after weeks of torture, our grouchy gull has flown the coop.