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Guest

153

If you’re a team lead or a manager, you have power over people - and that changes relationships.

In this episode

Middle managers are often underutilized and can play a very strategic role within organizations.

See the role of the middle manager as connecting the contextual knowledge from the top of the organization with the day-to-day operations at the bottom. They can be extremely valuable when they work across the organization.

We also touch on change and the resistance to it. Esther shares her ideas for implementing successful changes in businesses.

In episode #153, Esther tackles her rules for positive, productive change and discusses the challenges organizations face when changes need to be implemented. 

Esther Derby has over 40 years of experience leading and observing organizational change within a wide variety of organizations, from startups to Fortune 500 companies.

Today, Esther is a consultant, advisor, speaker, and author, helping leaders develop a workplace where everyone contributes to positive change.

Tune in to hear all about Esther’s leadership journey and the lessons learned along the way!


Like this episode? Be sure to leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review and share the podcast with your colleagues.


05:50

Status’s effect on relationships

11:45

Change starts from where you are

15:00

The people are not the problem

19:28

The role of the middle managers

24:40

What are whitespace roles

30:45

Put your fingerprints on it


Resources mentioned in this episode:


Transcript

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  00:39

Esther, welcome to the show.

Esther Derby  03:38

Thanks for having me.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  03:40

Yeah, very excited to do this. So I know you are someone who spends a lot of time coaching executives from all walks of life, you started your career actually, as a programmer, you’ve worn many hats. We even talked about recently, I mean, just before we hit record how you were assessed to your mentor, coach, but you spend your time with a lot of executives from Fortune 500 companies, you write a lot, you speak a lot. Your recent book was called the seven rules for positive productive change, which came out in 2019. Before we start, one of the things that we like to do is to ask our guests when do you remember when you first started to manage or lead a team when you first got exposure to it? What were some of the early mistakes that you remember making?

Esther Derby  04:25

Well, we could be here a long time. But first I want to offer a little refinement because I don’t just work with executives, I work with managers I work with team leads. So I work with coaching people at all levels in the organization because I believe that we are all leaders if we choose to be no matter what level. So with that refinement in mind, my early mistakes I think I had in correct ideas about positional power. Like I thought because I was a manager I could you know I could just I make things happen. And that turned out to not be so true. I think that’s really common for managers early or team leads early in their, in their career, you know, they have an idea that part of management is telling people what to do. And that’s actually not terribly effective. So I found I had to rely on other sources of power, like being respected as someone who made good decisions, I had to rely on building relationships with people who reported to me and to my peers, and to the people above me, I underestimated how the limits of positional power, and how important other forms of power were, I think I also wasn’t always aware of how status changes implicate relationships. You know, if you’re a team lead peer manager, you have power over people. And that changes relationships, that really changes that status, different changes, changes some things for people. For one thing, it makes it harder for people to speak up, right? Because there’s always some kind of friction, bringing up issues. But when you’re, you have to bring up issues to someone above you in the hierarchy. It’s harder, because they have power over you.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  06:29

Yeah, I mean, this is so true. And I think what I like about this point, in particular, is when we sometimes talk about this topic on the podcast, it’s usually when people go from, you know, being appear or to being a manager, and we’re typically talking about that first line manager, but I think your point about status making a difference in the way people speak up. I mean, that applies to all levels, right? Like from it just like any sort of manager or relationship at any part of the organization, no matter how large or small that company is, changes everything.

Esther Derby  07:03

I had a client once who they were having a lot of issues with their teams, not reaching sprint commitments. And I looked at the data their Sprint’s were always overstaffed, like completely overstocked. And I pointed this out. And then one of the managers said, Yeah, well, we told them to tell us if they had too much work. And I’m sure they did. I’m sure the managers did say that. But I don’t think they accounted for the fact that these people had, you know, years of history of saying no to your manager is a career limiting move. They had years of history of knowing that they were going to be ranked and evaluated on whether they met these commitments that they didn’t actually have a lot of say in this, it was really hard for them to say no, because there’s this whole dynamic about, well, if you won’t do it, I’ll find someone who will. And that kind of implication of your jobs at risk, not in every organization. But you know, that sort of dynamic plays out a lot. I think there’s on one level have a desire to relate to other people as humans. And that leads people to forget the status difference and the effect that’s going to have in people’s ability to speak up. Yeah,

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  08:23

that’s super interesting. So we’re talking about, you know, surface level, the problem that people are talking about is, you know, maybe we don’t finish our sprints on time. And maybe the easy answer is, well, they’re always, you know, stuffed with too many things. But it’s really interesting that once you dig in, the result is actually this cultural thing. And I’m wondering, how did you was that easy to pinpoint when you were working with that organization to get to that? Well, this is the actual root of the problem, the behavioral problem, where it emerges,

Esther Derby  08:55

there were actually a number of contributors to that problem. It was hard for the managers who had good intentions. And I think were sincere in wanting to know if people couldn’t meet commitments, it was hard for them to accept that because of the dynamic people were less likely to, you know, to speak up about those issues. And it was I think, hard for them to accept people don’t trust that we mean what we say I think that was personally hard for people who does not want likes to hear that people don’t trust them.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  09:33

Yeah, that can definitely be hard to accept any sort of thing where find out something very surprising, especially if it’s on a personal basis. It definitely takes some reflection and some time to really have it sink in. And so you go into this place you lead a change. So maybe before we talk about like specifically what you did to help resolve this situation, maybe we can just talk about because your your book is all about out creating change, right? So why did you write the book? Maybe we can start there. What was like original intention behind writing this?

Esther Derby  10:09

Well, a long time. One of my mentors, Gerry Weinberg said to me, always remember your reader and how you can help them or how you will help them. And I have seen both so many change efforts that cost a lot of money, and a lot of effort, and in the end result in you know, different terminology, but not much else. So I’ve been, you know, exploring and experimenting and working with those sorts of changes for a long time. And the stuff that typical approach often doesn’t work. So I wanted to help people be more successful in making change by sharing some stuff that does work.

10:54

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Esther Derby  11:52

Well, first, the title of the book is rules. But they’re really more heuristics or rules of thumb. But a book with seven heuristics I don’t think pant that’s not as snappy. So my favorite depends on the day. I think given what I just talked about, about the reason I wrote the book to help people be more successful change, I think my favorite is assess what is today. And that heuristic says change doesn’t start with a vision it starts from where you are. So while it may be nice to know where you’re going, you have to know where you’re going. You have to also know where you are. Because if you don’t address what is it’s not likely you’re going to achieve what you desire. So let me tell you a little story. When I was a corporate employee, of the company I worked for, like many companies concerned that big software projects were always late. And they almost always were. And they decided that you know,

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  12:58

maybe we did was that you make I know you sound familiar, I’m gonna assume you don’t have a secret. And all of them are really great. And we’ve had to talk about a

Esther Derby  13:11

consulting firm, and they trained everybody in the department on this methodology. And we all had binders about the methodology that took up about four feet of space, this was all in paper. So we had these huge binders that took up space, so that we would have all this knowledge about how to deliver software projects on time. And we learned that we were not writing documents, we were writing on work products, when we did our plans, and so forth and so on. And we had job aids to help us very big effort took a year. And at the end of the year, one of the vice presidents announced this method is now business as usual. And I looked around and I noticed that aside from people referring to documents as work products and templates, as job aids, nothing had changed. So it really was business as usual. The reason nothing had changed was they had slapped this methodology down on top of existing processes and practices and dynamics. And they reasserted themselves. So they failed to deeply understand and address the many factors that were causing projects to consistently be late. So when you are making a change, you have to look at what holds the current pattern in place, what is causing the current pattern, and you have to address those issues, rather than just putting something on top of it. I mean, back then it was a big methodology that took up you know, four feet of space and by yours now it’s agile, it’s what people are doing very often. In either case, unless you address the underlying issues, what holds the pattern in place, you’re not going to see much change. That’s super interesting.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  15:11

And so you’re saying that even before like in such a situation, the right way to have gone about it is before bringing in a new methodology to at least spend the time to really be able to clearly articulate in a way that everybody can look at it and say, yep, that’s the that’s the problem, you know, before bringing in something new, because maybe the methodology then isn’t even a good solution based on what the actual state of the businesses,

Esther Derby  15:38

right. So I would say the problems understand the problems and the influences. So in many organizations, it’s assumed that the people are the problem. You know, if they just had better skills, or they had a better methodology, they wouldn’t be able to do better. They had a better process. But, you know, there were a ton of reasons that projects were late in that company, and, you know, pulling those apart and figuring out what it was about those projects, what it was about the budgeting systems, what it was about the reward systems, you know, all of those things would have been more helpful.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  16:17

I 100%. Agree. And it’s very interesting how people tend to blame the people, I’m sure you know, about, like that famous Toyota case study where they took over the GM plants. And the going school of thought was that it’s the employees, the employees are the ones that are causing the problems. And, you know, Toyota takes over and all of a sudden, it becomes one of the best performing plants, and they didn’t change any of the people. So it’s a great case study. So that’s awesome. So assess what it is, or assess what is, what would be what would be another favorite one.

Esther Derby  16:51

Another favorite one, honor the past present in people. Because nobody likes to be told what you’re doing is stupid, bad and wrong. Nobody likes to be told that. So I think you have to look at the fact that people are doing the best they can with what they have. And it’s very likely that what they have is the result of management decisions that have happened over a period of time. So I think it’s important to just recognize that, you know, things are the way because they got that way people are doing the best they can in this situation, and can no not come in and tell them they’re wrong. That is certainly I’ve seen something I’ve seen in the Agile world is that, you know, there’s the implication that Agile is the way and what do you are doing is just, you know, makes no sense. So there’s always stuck in organizations that works. Always, you can always find something that works that you can build on.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  17:53

Hey there, just a quick pause on today’s episode to let you know that we really appreciate you helping us spread the word about the Supermanagers podcast, if you’re enjoying what you’re hearing, so far, dial into your podcast app of choice, whether that’s on Apple, or Android or Spotify. And just leave us a quick review. Now back to the interview. Yeah, it’s very interesting, like this is such a great lesson. And it shows that you’ve experienced it plus deeply thought about it, there’s very concept that even if things are going wrong, and even if the current state is not a desirable state, and you might even describe it as a negative state, it’s still important to honor the work that the people have done. And that little thing could be the difference of you know, getting buy in or not. And so I think that’s super, it’s very, very wise. Absolutely. So obviously, we won’t go through all seven. But I did want to give everybody a teaser of some of these rules of thumb, the heuristics as you call them, so that they can make sure to pick up the book and get through the rest. And what I love about this creating change is there are so many you know, this applies to everything. I feel like every progress has changed, right? So it could be bringing in a new leader as part of a team, it could be creating a new process, it could, you know, changing the strategy, all of these things are change. And these little heuristics can be the difference between actually getting things done at work or not. So one thing that united started chatting about and I’m very curious to get your thoughts on, we started the podcast and I was explaining how, you know, when we first started the podcast, our goal and by calling the podcast Supermanagers was to really champion managers, we think that they can be an extreme source of leverage for organizations and can impact major change. One of the things that you in passing said is there’s a lot of talk about middle managers these days. We’re hearing a lot of information about how organizations there’s too much bureaucracy and it’s all the middle managers is fault. And so yeah, I just wanted to You know, get your thoughts on, you know what you’re seeing in the world out there. And you know, if you agree or these good changes, how do you view all of what’s happening?

Esther Derby  20:09

I think middle managers are really underutilized group. I think that role has potential to be really strategic. But you have to think about a few changes beforehand. So one thing I have noticed in organizations is that this usually starts when the company gets bigger than like, oh, I don’t know, maybe 30 people, there’s the original founders, the inner circle, you may have noticed, this isn’t your company, where there’s the inner circle, the founders may be the first round of employees who they get everything about the company, right? They know the business model, they know the value proposition. They know the customers, they know why you’re in it, they know all that stuff, all that contextual knowledge about why you’re doing this and who you’re doing it for, as companies getting bigger, right? They hire people who don’t have that knowledge, right, and they hire for specific skills and for specific roles. That word is challenging me today. And they assign work that is sometimes disconnected from that big picture. I often visualize this as you have two triangles. So you have the triangle at the bottom, which is like the day to day, how do we get things done? How do we deliver services? How do we make products? That’s like the front line people who are making stuff, right? And then there’s the top triangle? Which is the contextual stuff, what’s our market? How do we treat our customers all that stuff, and these two triangles overlap, right. And the overlap, which I call the diamond, which is where the that knowledge is often shared, that’s often where the middle managers are. So they get the context, but they also get the day to day. And that is extremely valuable. How that is often used in organizations is they become conduits, right? So passing information from the steering level, the strategic stuff down to the people who are going to be building the products and services. That’s typical, what I think is strategic is when those managers can work across the organization. Right? So then they are not just looking up and down and making sure people are doing work, they are looking across the organization. So they’re looking at the value stream, they’re looking at how processes interact with each other, they’re looking at end to end flow, they’re looking at do teams have what they need to get work done. And that is super strategic. And they have the knowledge to do it, when they integrate.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  22:52

So that’s super interesting. Can we go through, even if it’s a fictional example of, you know, really driving the point home, for example, at a company middle manager is typically used to do these sorts of things. And this is what their role looks like. But if that company did things better, this is an example of what they might undertake.

Esther Derby  23:10

So typically, middle managers are responsible for one or more teams producing whatever it is a product, a service, whatever, and they tend to focus on their team. But particularly in larger organizations, it is not those teams are reliant on other groups to actually get work done. And that so those handoffs and those dependencies are a major contributor to things being late things not getting done things like getting done correctly. So if you had, you know, the managers who were involved in those handoffs and dependencies working together, rather than separately in their little silos, it’s very likely could work out a workflow that work more smoothly, or prior to prioritize things in a way that allowed things to flow more smoothly. Does that make sense?

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  24:05

Yeah, so you’re describing them as people that rather than being very internally focused, in their own org, do a lot of thinking about how orcs can interrelate. And like he said, if they’re connectors in that way, they’re thinking about not being too internally focused, but also like playing both roles that can be very strategic, because you’re right, like if someone doesn’t take responsibility for that your day to day is going to get filled with whatever you need to get done for your function, even if those things aren’t maybe the right things for the overall company. And so yeah, I think that makes a lot of sense.

Esther Derby  24:43

And the reward systems tend to reward Yeah, and do this thing within your group, rather than work on making the end to end function more effectively.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  24:54

So one of the topics that I think maybe is related but you often Talk about teams and successful teams. And one of the constructs that you use or terms that you use is whitespace roles. And maybe you can define what a whitespace role is. And I’m curious if you see what middle managers do is that like, would you consider that also a whitespace function? Or not really, maybe we’ll start with what is a white space role?

Esther Derby  25:22

Well, those are the roles that don’t show up on the job description. So when we read a job description, we, you know, we’re reading the black type on the white paper, but there’s all this stuff, there’s all of this white area around there, that is essential, you can’t put the words and black type on it if you don’t have it. So they tend to be the things that actually help facilitate work, right. So the people who are really good at say, summarizing in a conversation, which helps people crystallize their thinking, it helps people reach agreement. That’s a whitespace role, somebody who is good at navigating conflict, that might be a whitespace role. I mean, this is not going to show up in a technical job description, someone who pays attention to the needs of the group and making sure people feel like their voices are heard, and they’re included, that might be a whitespace role. So all of those things are essential for a group of humans to function. But the job descriptions typically are, you know, just focused on accomplishing of discrete technical tasks. Now, they may have collaboration thrown in there. Yeah. What does that really mean anyway? And when it comes to reading time, that what counts is the tangible stuff, you know, did you write this program? Does the program run without those whitespace roles that enable people to work together effectively as a team, you know, will the program run? Maybe not?

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  26:55

It’s very interesting, like, as you were describing this, I was imagining multiple people at our company, where they’re almost like this, like, I can imagine the person who is the, you know, make sure that everybody is heard and feels included, like I know who that is. I think about people who are almost like integrators, like they’re part of everyone, and they’d like to be a supporting function and help the other teams do well, and they go out of their way. And they spend extra extra hours in order to make it possible, and they do what they do. But they also are a great enabler of others. And you’re right, like, if these people weren’t at our company, I could definitely see that we would be a lot less effective. But these roles are not defined anywhere. And sometimes they’re unseen, maybe they’re not appreciated very explicitly, because like you said, these are not things that normally come up in a review, in a review, it’s more like, how many deals did we win? Or, you know, how many of these did we ship and these things don’t tend to get awarded? But one question I might have is, is there a symptom? You know, if you’re trying to look at, you’re looking at a team and you’re hearing an executive or Team Leader talk about problems? How would you like is there a way that you can diagnose that maybe you just don’t have enough of these types of folks on your team? Like, is there? Are there symptoms? And how do you find them? So say that the problem is we don’t have enough of them on the team? How do you look out for those sorts of people to bring them in?

Esther Derby  28:24

Well, you might find you have integration errors, because people aren’t talking, aren’t talking to each other. So they aren’t working together on things, when all the tasks are individually assigned. I mean, that’s, in some ways, fairly common. But if that’s accompanied by an integration issues, I might wonder if that’s happening, if I hear people talking about I did this, I did this a lot. Versus we did this, it might be a sign. You know, there’s some signs like the what’s the level of camaraderie on the team? I think Edgar Schein put it really, really nicely. He’s the views teamwork is continual mutual help. You said that was the definition of teamwork, continuous mutual help. So if I don’t see people helping each other, that’s a big sign. You know, and it’s possible that that’s because, you know, the reward systems are against it. But even in, you know, cases where people are interviewed, reviewed individually, I still see people engaging in mutual help. That reminded me of a company I visited a long, long time ago that their manager had this idea that you were assigned individual tasks and you did your individual work, and there was no need to talk to other people. Every week, she would hand out each individual a task list. And when they asked to see the overall plan, she would tell them that was on a need to know basis and they didn’t need to know they just needed to get their work done. And she actively discouraged people from working together. If they wanted to coordinate with each other, you know, figure out how to do they had to either do it on a break, or they had to hide.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  30:08

Wow. That’s pretty extreme.

Esther Derby  30:11

That’s really extreme. But that was the only way they could actually make things come together was if they hid, that they were collaborating. You. Yeah, that was an extreme.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  30:22

Yeah, that’s the extreme on the I think the label we’ve used on the podcast before, it’s just transactional leadership. And it’s, that’s so hard on that leader, actually, because it’s, they’re going to be the bottleneck for everything. Everything has to flow through them. It’s just, I mean, it’s gonna be tough on them, they’re gonna have so much I mean, that’s a stressful job.

Esther Derby  30:43

I would question using the term leader to describe that behavior. Yeah, that’s fair to say it’s definitely transactional. How could you be successful? Well, it was teddy bear. He had a very, to my mind strange model of management, what management is?

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  31:01

Yeah, but it’s interesting. I mean, these stories make great case studies. Thank you for sharing that.

Esther Derby  31:07

Very, very mechanistic, very mechanistic.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  31:09

Yeah. And there’s another term that you use, and I want to loop back and talk about the original story that we talked about. But I did want to very quickly, because I think this is also related, is just the fingerprint principle, because again, we’re talking about making change. So I just love the term, it’s a great term. It’s also like, for me, it’s a memorable term. So maybe you can also explain what that is?

Esther Derby  31:33

Well, it’s about getting your fingerprints on a change. So very often, people with the best of intentions, will design a new process or design a new practice, or, you know, whatever it is, and they come to people, and they hand it to them as a very finished and polished product. Sometimes they ask for feedback. But if something looks finished and polished, you may not feel like there’s any room for feedback, you know, you may feel like, well, this is a done deal. There’s no room for me to put any input in here. So they just kind of sit there and accept it. And they might not look into what are the issues with implementation? Or what are some other ideas I have that might work make it work better. So I find it’s really helpful when you’re looking at any sort of change is to get people involved in it, let them get their fingerprints on it. Right, let them have a hand in, in designing it and refining it and implementing it. Because then then it becomes theirs?

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  32:38

And are there tactical ways you know that one can do this? I know, I’ve heard almost a sarcastic view of this where it’s come up with the idea with one obvious problem that is easy to spot so that someone else can solve it so that they can have their fingerprints on it. But maybe that’s just more, more satirical than anything else. Are there other tactical ways to do that?

Esther Derby  33:01

Well, the one obvious error, I do that sometimes, right? Because then it gives people permission. You know, and if you respond to it in a way of saying, Oh, that’s a great idea what other you know, where else can we make some refinements, then people will start to have input. So I don’t, it’s a way that works.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  33:21

But I like your framing, though. Because your your framing is actually a better framing on it. Because, and I say that because it’s almost like, you know how some stores have lost leaders, you’ll have like one thing in there to bring people in the store, and then they’ll do more shopping. But if you have that one obvious error, maybe it’s you know, it’s the beginning of a brainstorming session. And once you found one problem, or one thing to add, then you can add other things. So actually, like your framing a lot better.

Esther Derby  33:47

Yeah. So I think, you know, involving people in understanding the problem involving them in thinking about what solutions are possible. All of these are ways for people to get their fingerprints on things. I read a study once and I wish I could put my finger on it. I haven’t been able to relocate it, but it was the gist of it was that, I believe it was a French company that was facing some really dire financial situation. And they they figured out a plan to kind of stabilize the financial situation, and you know, be able to continue to do business and involve layoffs. And then some other fairly drastic measures. Before they were employed about to implement it. Someone had the brilliant idea of well, let’s ask the people who work here, and they explained what the situation was, and they, you know, acknowledge this very serious financial problems they were having looked at the industry and looked at the prospects and got a subset of people together to work on it. The plan that they came up with had actually deeper cuts than the original one that managers had proposed. And some people gave up their jobs, some people reduced salaries with the hope that they would be better in the future. But it was a better plan.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  35:12

Yeah, I love it. I mean, that’s why you have other people on the team, right? Like you actually want the fingerprints because they make things better. So yeah, so this is great. So I did want to talk about like, just to the original story. So we talked about, you know, Sprint’s being overloaded people, you know, understanding that it was a cultural change, you know, for, because people were afraid to say no, and so they wanted to say yes to everything. How long did it take for you to resolve that situation, or help that company resolve that situation?

Esther Derby  35:44

Oh, we worked on various things for probably about a year. And, you know, we found out that that was part of it. We also found out that part of it was that there were really significant technical issues. So the teams recognized that they were going to get stuck at some point. So they would take more stuff in because they knew they were going to be stuck. And they wanted to keep working on it. They wanted to keep working. Right. So they weren’t just sitting idle waiting for the technical issue to be resolved, because it was a kind of recurrent thing. And we know we were starting to make some progress. And then the company was sold.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  36:22

Ah, yeah, that’s typical tech company.

Esther Derby  36:27

You can’t get too attached as a consultant.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  36:31

That’s funny. But yeah, that’s very interesting, I think, yeah, things like this are deeply rooted. It’s very good to point out that there were multiple issues. These things are typically very, they’re complex systems, right? Teams are a form of complex system. And it’s really cool to hear how you broke it apart, and then started tackling all of those little things together. So I know we’re coming up on time. And so we’ve talked about a lot. We talked about middle managers, which I thought the to triangle framework, I’d never heard that. And I think like the fact that you said, you know, most people think of them as conduits, but they can actually be strategic and work across functions. I thought that was really cool. I love the two rules, the seven heuristics and I’d love for everybody to check out the book. Today we talked about assess what is honor the past, present, and people I love that like that phraseology, too. I know you quoted I forget what the person’s name was that you just mentioned, but teamwork being continuous mutual help, what was the person’s name again,

Esther Derby  37:31

Edgar Schein,

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  37:32

Edgar Schein,

Esther Derby  37:33

he was a very wise man. He wrote some really great books, humble inquiry and humble consulting, I think are two that I really love. He died fairly recently. I don’t remember exactly what it was, but fairly recently, a great writer on organizations and teams.

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  37:51

Yeah, and we’ll definitely include those books for everybody to also check out in the show notes. So the question we like to always add on is for all the managers and leaders constantly looking to get better at their craft. Are there any final tips, tricks or words of wisdom that you would leave them with

Esther Derby  38:07

think systemically and act locally?

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  38:11

And on that point, how do people do that?

Esther Derby  38:15

And you look beyond your boundaries of your responsibilities and look at the inputs and look at the outputs and look at how things relate to each other? What are the relationships between those pieces?

Aydin Mirzaee (Fellow.app)  38:28

I love that don’t get tunnel vision, see how things are related? I think that’s great advice and a great place to end it. Esther, thank you so much for doing this.

Esther Derby  38:37

My pleasure. It was a fun conversation.

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