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The Model Corporation: Part Five. Managing Total Performance Properly

By   Follow Me on Twitter     Message Gary Brumback     Permalink
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We have been following so far in this series of six articles the building of a model corporation; one that is a small lowerarchy; is owned, governed and led responsibly; and has an uplifting culture. In this fifth article a final feature is added. In the model corporation and in a real corporation if it is to be a great one, total performance must be managed and managed properly.


The Meaning of Total Performance


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Recall in Part One that corporate greatness was described by this outcome side of an equation (the left, input side being an interaction between situations and people):


              Consistently Positive Behavior + Consistently Positive Results

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Notice that it has two components, not one. Total performance is not total if any treatment of it, whether simply in thinking about it or in doing something about it does not include behavior and the results or consequences of the behavior.


Recall also in Part One the list of incidents of corporations that pundits had anointed as great ones because of their sustained financial success. The incidents depicted undesirable, unethical corporate actions. The corporations and the pundits neglected one of the components. The unconventional bottom line of behavior can't be neglected anymore than can be the conventional bottom line of results.


The Meaning of Managing Performance

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Recall in Part Two that one of the bad premises of a hierarchically structured organization is that the primary meaning given to "managing" is its source, a manager occupying a managerial position. In a hierarchy managers manage their own careers and subordinates. In a lowerarchy managing is a process, not a person; everyone is a performer, not a manager or subordinate; what are managed are not subordinates but performance; everyone manages performance; and much of the process is simultaneously both individual and team self performance management.   


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Retired organizational psychologist.

Author of The Devil's Marriage: Break Up the Corpocracy or Leave Democracy in the Lurch; America's Oldest Professions: Warring and Spying; and Corporate Reckoning Ahead.

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