Why is it important to learn effectiveness? First of all, one cannot assume to manage a team or a company with much success, if one is unable to manage oneself first.
Executives who do not manage themselves for effectiveness cannot possibly expect to manage their associates and subordinates. Management is largely by example. Executives who do not know how to make themselves effective in their own job and work set the wrong example.*
Effectiveness should be learned, on a personal level, first. Because without it, there is no way a venture can be effective, if the single parts, the people in it, are not. But one can not really change others, without changing oneself first. All the seeking for effectiveness should begin with one self. Intelligence, imagination, and knowledge are are not enough. They are essential resources, but only effectiveness converts them into results.
Nothing is more lame, than a great deal of resources, time and brain power devoted to the wrong thing. Drucker writes:
There are few things less pleasing to the Lord, and less productive, than an engineering department that rapidly turns out beautiful blueprints for the wrong product.
Work alone is not enough, because only working on the right things is what makes knowledge work effective. But this is no easy thing to do. It is not capable of being measured by any of the yardsticks for manual work. You can only measure the end result, the effect the culmination of different ideas has on the bigger picture.
The knowledge worker cannot be supervised closely or in detail. He can only be helped. But he must direct himself, and he must direct himself toward performance and contribution, that is, toward effectiveness.
At the end, effectiveness means getting the right things done and not necessarily doing everything right. There is no point in doing something well that shouldn’t be done at all. For a knowledge worker only this means being productive. To get the right things done.
Thanks for reading,
*All quotes come from “The effective executive” by Peter Drucker