This post takes it's origins from one of my favorite websites, Peter's Evil Overlord List. In essence, the site is a list of common blunders in movies and plots where you would find the "Evil Villain" character type. What I also find when reading the site is that it grants amazing insights into the world of people management.
Today's lesson comes from point number 32, which reads:
"I will not fly into a rage and kill a messenger who brings me bad news just to illustrate how evil I really am. Good messengers are hard to come by."
Killing the messenger is all to common a management response to bad news. The problem with killing the messenger is that, as the quote says, good messengers are VERY hard to come by. The people who will be honest with you, the ones who will tell you when you're about to make a presentation with your fly down or that the marketing plan for the next quarter sounds like it was designed by a 3 year old throwing chewing gum at a dart board, these are the people who you don't want to injure the lines of communication with.
Yes men are easy to find. There is no shortage of people in this world who will disagree with you and still play sycophant to your face. Someone who is honest enough to tell you when you're wrong or you've got a screwy view of the world, even if you don't like it, is someone you should probably keep around as long as possible.
(This blog is a teaser post for Heather's new management seminar, How to Manage Like an Evil Overlord, which can be booked by emailing her at firstname.lastname@example.org, or calling her at 785.410.7385)