Leadership management art and method
The work of management at all levels is complex. How do we enhance leadership performance and management efficiency in a balanced way? It needs the application of scientific leadership management art and method. As society progresses, leadership management art and method innovate. To improve incessantly and renovate leadership method and art in leadership management work is a basic requirement to enhance leadership capabilities.
Art is the perfection and enhancement of methods. It is a way of being creative, a higher-level method, and is the perfection and enhancement of methods. In addition, art is also included in the scope of strategy.
If we want to make good use of democratic working methods, we have to be adept in transforming personal opinions into everyone’s opinions; adept in discovering advanced experience from the masses, refining typical advanced examples and then using them to educate everyone; and adept in utilizing the art of mutual education.
Leaders need to have a funny conversation style and be good with vivid metaphors. Being humorous and good at coming up with inspiring strategies should be consistent. The way to grasp this art is first to learn language skills and then to pay adequate attention to training and practice. Artistic language full of humor, and vivid metaphors help us express our intentions and feelings so as we get what we want.
The best way to persuade a general is provocation, which can be used to activate employees’ working enthusiasm, faith in winning, and spirit of fighting to the death and bravely killing enemies. The technique of this method lies in hiding the real goals of leaders, and making use of a kind of art to trigger feelings. The highest point of the human spirit can be triggered and leads people to working goals.
Persuasion and provocation are consistent with the art of strategy. Their goals and methods of instruction are in accord. But the way of exerting them on different people is not the same, especially for those who are experienced and sophisticated. When it comes to those people, no provocation will be applied, but persuasion. The virtue of the art is that its concrete application varies with individuals.
‘Prominence – balance and balance – prominence’ is a law by which everything develops. We will apply this law to economic work on our own initiative, stressing management benefits and development benefits, and in daily work by stressing cultivation and selection of good examples from which others should learn, forming waves of development.
Based on the circular spiral law of philosophical cognition, all matter and thinking derived from matter can be repeatedly grafted. After grafting, there are changes in the new substance, and one can see different results. In practice, we apply the 36 stratagems and military strategies and tactics of Mao Zedong to commercial battles.
• Touch. A good design of products entails a good sense of touch. When people talk to each other, and if you impress them with senses of touch, understanding and trust, your communication with others will go well.
The art of language means strengthening solidarity and coordinating it with the implementation of working methods. When talking to someone one should try to aim at the right point at which one can start a conversation with others. In public, first of all, we should be aware of the characteristics of those we are faced with and find common ground where we can converse with them, and consequently have empathy with people. In addition, we should learn a conversation style of being both blunt and implicit. Compliments and praises are a language of beauty people like to hear. If compliments and praise are applied in a good way, they can help arouse people’s enthusiasm. We often say that we should guard against arrogance and rudeness and be modest and discreet. But being modest has certain limits. If you are way too modest, you will become a hypocrite. Euphemistic language of criticism can be misunderstood.
First of all, see the big picture, and take the big picture into consideration, which will be the starting point when we consider and deal with problems. Respect your colleagues, raise and discuss questions with them, instead of being arrogant. Try to be good at putting forward some different opinions and being faithful to the truth. Consider things as they stand, rather than deny everything. Adhere to principles and flexibility.
• Throw a stone to clear the road. When we are not so sure of something and do not have any clue, why don’t we take our problems to other people for advice. We can judge what is right and what is wrong from their reaction.
1. Set overall objectives in the correct way and implement them in stages. First of all, set the goals you are striving for and then summarize them to formulate a scheme of implementation. Classify objectives as long term, middle term and short term. Measures have to go beyond objectives in order to achieve the objectives.
2. Hold on to facts and be consistent between the subjective and the objective. First, conduct research and investigation. The right decisions only come from research and investigation. Second, find principal contradictions and principal aspects of contradictions within a certain range of time, and focus on them to give impetus to ordinary contradictions to be resolved. Third, learn to research and investigate: know exactly what the goals of investigation are; be clear about the outline of the investigation; choose typical cases to analyze – the so-called ‘dissect a sparrow’; become fully aware of adverse effects exerted by initiative on the objective.
3. Formulate correct and feasible stratagems, strategies and policies. Do this by: creating the right macro stratagems and macro strategies, based on the conditions of the subjective and objective goals and tasks of groups, determining macro stratagems and macro stratagems, formulating tactical macro approaches; determining correct macro stratagems and micro strategies; macro strategies need to be ensured by macro strategies, and need still more micro strategies – concrete tactics to be realized; formulating feasible macro strategies and micro strategies and policies or codes of behavior drawn up under a certain historical period; they are concrete while strategies are guidelines and means of fighting, and are abstract; policies and strategies underlie macro stratagems. Policies serve stratagems, and a certain stratagem is certain to be associated with a certain policy.
4. Show leadership and control. First, categories of control: single line control – program control; double line control – two lines of execution and inspection; superior and inferior supervision control; double way supervision control — control of the execution system and control of the guarantee system restrict each other. Second, control of minds: a positive guide is used to uphold healthy tendencies. Third, control of public opinions. Fourth, lay stress on typical examples, enhance publicity, and stimulate overall development.
5. Be democratic. Democracy is a way and means, not an end. Democracy consists of three conditions: that leaders will be good at transferring their own correct ideas to others in a democratic way; that leaders will adopt democracy to solve problems whenever they do not know what to do; that leaders will try to make their mind rich and profound, and become involved with the masses. When finding correct thoughts, methods, typical examples, and conclusions, leaders can promote them.
6. Use the mass line. The mass line is a working method by which correct thought and typical examples are extracted from the masses and then applied to the masses. The best examples and experience are sorted out and subsequently promoted among the masses. The power of example is used to educate people.
7. Combine material and spiritual stimulation. In the primary stage of socialism, most people tried to make ends meet; therefore, the stimulation of materials had to be used as a means to motivate their enthusiasm. Meanwhile spiritual stimulation was also needed.
8. Organize study classes. Study classes can help solve problems and can be organized to study useful theories. They are centralized. They can help encourage wide discussion and encourage people to exchange opinions, which complement each other, and solutions are enhanced. Study classes can set up barrier teaching and case teaching, which can help improve the working ability of managers so as to achieve a high degree of unity of thought.
9. Conduct ideological work according to laws of thinking. General and special laws of thinking can be used to conduct ideological work. The so-called ‘one key to all locks’ is the thought of grasping typical examples. Problems of cognition can be solved by one approach. But individual problems should be solved using the appropriate method, the so-called ‘one key to one lock’.
10. Protect the overall situation at the expense of the partial situation. To be a leader one needs an understanding of the overall situation, so a leader has to let go of some partial interests for the sake of overall interests. When balancing pros and cons, choose big interests at the expense of small drawbacks; when balancing major losses and minor losses, choose minor ones over major ones.
11. ‘Play the piano’. This is a working method of grasping work in a comprehensive way. One issue stands out at a certain time, but extra attention must be paid to other aspects to coordinate work. It is a process of motion characteristic of being vivid and dramatic as well as a combination of being slow and fast.
12. Praise and reward. One method is to praise someone at a small meeting; a second is to praise and reward someone at a large meeting. Another way to praise and reward someone in a live conference, which entails promoting advanced experience and giving impetus to overall work.
13. Use a vertical level inspection. In the level inspection leaders are required to inspect after they assign work. Superiors check up on inferiors who then inspect people inferior to them. This kind of inspection is carried out until the lowest level is inspected. Another method is called for, the anti-perspective method of inspection. That is to conduct anti-perspective inspection down to the lowest level of work, which can help prevent us from being bureaucrats.
14. Rely on backbone employees to create a snowball effect. Rely on your backbone employees, and then expand them to create a snowball effect. The work has to be performed steadily and firmly, otherwise, a situation of ‘half-cooked rice’ will emerge, which means a job has not thoroughly been done.
15. Show trust and emotions to subordinates to stimulate their self-confidence. As a leader, one must have confidence in subordinates. In the meantime cultivate emotional relationships with employees, for emotions are able to help increase mutual trust and loyalty. Since self-confidence takes half the credit for successful businesses, the self-confidence of employees has to be stimulated and built.
16. Eliminate chaos. First evaluate people on their current performance rather than that of the past. Then implement strict discipline starting with all levels of leadership; meanwhile, leaders have to be strict with themselves and undertake ideological and political work primarily through praise. Leaders should organize rapidly to rectify groups and teams, and try to solve and balance various kinds of contradictions under the new leadership.
18. Manage employment properly. The management of employees is central to management in general. For good employment it is necessary to select talent appropriately. Put each employee in the right position.
19. Show authority and legal management. Developing a center and authority is necessary for ideological management combined with institutional management. The management of the whole network is incorporated in the range of the management of institutionalization, normalization, standardization, and elaboration.
20. Use contradictory management and cooperative management. Execution and supervision restrict each other, and decentralization and centralization are also contradictions, which should be reasonable and appropriate. Consolidate the unity of thought and organizations to confine non-organizational activities, putting aside minor differences so as to seek common ground. Manage in a centralized and unified way and require subordinates to obey leaders.
22. Know that ‘the weak hampers the strong’ and ‘the strong defeats the weak’. Employ superior forces to destroy enemies. A small team of troops fights a war of prevention, blinds and hampers the enemy’s superior forces.
24. Decentralize for the sake of contradiction handling. The effects of decentralization are that they motivate members of the leadership group to act on their own initiative, and they specify the rights and duties for each level and person so as to make sure every piece of work is attended to under the control of a responsible employee.
25. Re-educate. Enhance the whole quality level of leadership through inservice education, which entails professional training in employees’ spare time, and combining off-the-job training with amateur training and in-service training.
26. Use flexible publicity. Public relations involve internal and external parts. Internal public relations aim to motivate staff to move forward toward the same goal. External public relations win more support from society and leaders.
28. Grasp the connotations of institutional management and behavioral management. First, improve and perfect an institutionalized, standardized, and detailed routine control and management system, which is the most important code of connotation. Second, detailed management procedures make it easier for quality management, which guarantees the quality of products. Third, attach great importance to the influence of spirit and human behavior.
29. Manage according to the ‘Charter of Anshan Iron and Steel Company’ and Daqing Spirit’. This is essential for being a leader. Implement ‘two participations, one reform, and three combinations’, ‘three honest’, ‘four strict’, ‘four identical’ reforms, and you will succeed. Two participations: the cadre should go to the grassroots to conduct deep research and participate in work in a designated place at the proper time; technical workers and workers’ representatives should participate in management – the decision-making, the formulation of regulations and work plans, etc. One reform: reform the company regulations, technology, and processes, etc. Three combinations: the leadership management committee integrates the administrative cadre, technical cadre, and workers. Three types of being honest: be an honest person; speak honest words; do honest things. Four types of being strict: strict organization, strict discipline, strict requirements and strict attitude. Four types of being identical: it should be identical whether the leader is present or absent; it should be identical with or without being checked by personnel; it should be identical in good or bad weather; it should be identical in daytime and at night.
30. Make good use of new technical tools to perform management. Modern tools can help people conduct management most directly and effectively. They are a means of great importance to improve the level of management and working efficiency.
32. Put ourselves into others’ shoes. We think about problems from the opposite perspective, which helps improve our thinking and the correctness of work and enhances the level and authority of leadership.
33. Understand network construction. The network construction will be improved and perfected as quickly as possible, and then deepened and refined. It is essential to establish the network well and check up on it regularly.
34. Punish and reward managers. The faster a manager is rewarded, the better. When punishing managers, one should criticize them harshly and slowly to prevent them from being emotional. But under some special circumstances, the punishment of a manager is supposed to be dealt with promptly but righteously.
35. Hold regular meetings. Hold meetings regularly with managers of a certain rank to report, research, and discuss work, and solve problems. Afterwards hold office meetings to deal with problems in a way which makes leaders have enough time to do much more important things.
36. Lure the tiger out of the mountains and steal beams and pillars to replace them with rotten timbers. The tactic of luring the tiger out of the mountains means luring your enemies away from their base so as to seize each opportunity. The tactic of ‘steal beams and pillars and replace them with rotten timbers’ has the connotation of altering the content and nature of things by way of deception. In marketing sales, especially in a very competitive market, these two tactics will be taken into consideration.
37. Drop the bait, cast your net wider, and get driven to do something. These tactics are commonly used in the military and in market competition. These tactics have to be employed flexibly in commercial battles.
38. Play to score, and win the majority. Leaders must know exactly where they stand and what kind of people they are faced with when speaking, behaving, and making decisions. The first thing for a leader to do is to define himself and his work, and survey the approaches by which people’s enthusiasm will be stimulated to a maximum degree. A leader employs appropriate language to narrow the distance by all means from the people he deals with. Pay attention to speaking method and art, for good methods can ease contradictions rapidly to help relieve embarrassment and clear up barriers in work in a smart way.
Talent, enterprise, and stage are three important conditions for mankind to push the development of the productivity of consumption society and to make contribution to society. The three are interrelated and interact, and all are indispensable.
Talents are required for building up enterprise. In order to work out a great enterprise, we need talents with different abilities, levels, qualities, and characters. Talents with ability and good character can provide reliable guarantees for the enterprise. The enterprise needs talents, which can only be identified and reflected during the process of building up the enterprise.
A platform (or condition) is required for talents to establish the enterprise. Talents cannot exert their intelligence without platform or condition. There are two kinds of platforms: one mainly has objective conditions, the other will be set up by the creator after creating the condition. In reality, one usually creates the condition for enterprise for individuals rather than at beginning when the condition is available. The condition individuals create is the stage when a platform is set up.
The enterprise and stage are complementary to each other. Enterprise determines the size of the stage, while the stage plays a part in the proceedings of enterprise, accelerating or suspending enterprise. A small stage can only achieve a small enterprise. In order to make more contribution to society, you must be engaged in great enterprises on a big stage.
What is our strategy adjustment? It keeps giving priority to the medium and small sized cities to establish chains and shops. As only the network can provide benefits, we must accomplish network size to obtain a stable sales volume.
What are tactical adjustments? It means making improvement and innovation on the basis of the existing tactics. Combine the experience in marketing and promotion with service marketing, which is a basic tactical adjustment.
We should realistically take the initiative to complete tasks in a better way: 60–70% of the factory leaders’ time should be used to stay in the workshop, where they can identify problems as field management is the uppermost working method in a factory. And as for the market managers, especially top-level officials, 60% to 70% of their time should be used to investigate the front-line market and consumers so as to ask for their advice, learn from their experiences, and identify problems for a timely solution. The experience should be discovered early and be promoted in a timely manner, and the problems should be identified quickly to find an early solution. We must learn to use information for communication so as to promote our work efficiency. And the work should be carried out in a realistic and creative way.
The future work is to further sum up the experience on how to transform three motives into productivity. We should carefully pay attention to the formulation and implementation of three-motive policy. When carrying out this policy, we must focus on the detail and understand and implement the principle that the detail is the key to success and failure. The inspection work should check that details are well done, where the problems are, and who is responsible. All of these should be taken seriously and cannot be considered trivial.
After the adjustment of the strategies and tactics, the key issues lie in the quality, discipline, and execution of our management team. We must emphasize learning, including learning from books and learning in practice, to accomplish the achievement, and then put the knowledge and experience we learned into practice. There is a no-boundaries philosophy inside the enterprise philosophy of Sanzhu, which mainly emphasizes the idea of learning without boundaries, at home and abroad, or learning for our own use.
Whether the above-mentioned content can be implemented, the key lies in whether our top-level officials at all levels can use these points for self-discipline. If not, the leaders are deceivers. As time goes by, the authority and appeal of leadership will decline. Therefore, top-level officials at all levels should take the lead everywhere. The market front-line staff must be much younger; this is the important principle of the organizational work of cadres.