Teaching "How to Have A Job" Skills, On Management #25

“This is common sense -- why doesn't my team member already know it?"

Showing up on time.  Sending typo-free emails.  Following a dress code.  This month, an often-unexpected management responsibility:  providing employees with coaching and training on some basic job skills.

This month's audio comes to you courtesy of Ashley Milne-Tyte's The Broad Experience, where I was fortunate to make a recent guest appearance.

And, I don't read many pure business books.  This time, some reasons to read one of the few that I actually recommend.

Thank you for inviting me to your in-box.


How To Have a Job

A few Septembers ago, a highschooler I knew sent me an email.  It said, "I didn't do nothing" over the summer.  Not even some of the basic college prep activities we had planned together in June.

"I didn't do nothing."  Pretty sure my hair was on fire. 

After calming myself, I realized that that my highschooler's email presaged things I was hearing about new college grads in startups, not-for-profits, and larger firms. 

People deciding that they got to make their own schedule, or work from home at will.  Failing to meet deadlines, or to keep commitments. Deciding that a CEO's "open door policy" was an invitation for emails about grievances.

I saw how many emerging managers -- and some experienced ones -- failed to coach their team members about about important professional behaviors.  To the point where some were willing to label their own team members as Low Performers.

In conversation about what was, and was not common sense, I had begun to tell managers that it was indeed their responsibility to train new grads in these (often unspoken) workplace rules.

In the absence of some coaching, I realized, my own young mentee might be allowed to fail at a first job.  Without even knowing why.

I sat down and typed out a list, which I titled, "How to Have a Job." Since then I've shared the list with folks in my circles, and in my workplace. 

Here's the list, published for the first time, exclusively for newsletter subscribers.  (Use the supersecret password, hthaj.)

What do you think?  Is it your job to teach your newbies how to have a job?


This Month's Audio -- What Will 2018 Bring for Women?

I was a guest on Ashley Milne-Tyte's The Broad Experience -- one of my favorite podcasts.

Ashley has been ahead of the curve on so many of the workplaces issues that came to the fore in 2017.  It was a privilege to talk with her about what leaders can and should do to make workplaces comfortable for everyone.  Among other things!

Click here to listen.


Syllabus:  Michael Gerber's The E-Myth Revisited

I have bought E-Myth Revisited for a couple of company founders over the last few months.  It may be my most recommended business book.

  • Truth.  I don't know anyone who owns a business who can read The E-Myth Revisited without shaking their head, frequently, in recognition of the three conflicting personality traits that manifest in every business owner.

  • Utility  You don't have to be a CEO to benefit from the basics on how to create structure for the work your team does, even when you wear more than one hat.

  • Credibility  Millions have voted this book to the top of the business best seller list, year after year, for decades:  that's one testament to the book's enduring wisdom.

  • Caveats/Qualifications  Written in the last century, some of his languaging and analogies might feel a little clunky.  Use your imagination.

Business books are rarely enduring; this one is a classic.


What I've been reading, &

Related, from the archives


Welcome new readers, especially those who found me via The Broad Experience

And many thanks to the first people who have enrolled as paying members of my newsletter

Ann Friedman*, who writes a wonderful newsletter, inspired me to think about this newsletter like it is a business.  One of Ann's current projects is to inspire people to give blood:  if you can participate, sign up here.

I read and respond to all of my email, and I'd love your questions, suggestions, and more!

Many thanks to all,

Anne Libby
@annelibby

*Thanks to Ann herself, for sharing info about her business model.  Shine on!

Mother of Dragons