Imagine the Day When Your Promotion is not by your boss or what others leaders have heard about you and your past performance. Instead, you are promoted based on an election of the people you will be managing in a team environment. They pick you based on what they thought of your past performance, previous results and accomplishments, intelligence, vision, drive, relationships with the team members, inspirational and motivational skills and your genuine interest and past successes developing others.
It is not too far in the distant future that leaders will not be selected any longer by a select group of who you know and who knows your work but rather by a communal review and election. Everyone wants the winning team, the winning track record for success and soon it will move from the childhood line up of where some fortunate individual gets to pick the team and the selectee just hopes the right leader picks them first and they go early in the draft otherwise it tells others they weren’t their first choice.
Although the economy maybe still limping into recovery, I submit that we as leaders not be fooled and recognize our teammates are sizing up their accomplishments and options. When the time is right and someone is ready to jump in first, we will see a shift in how we select team members. We will move in the direction of a democracy of where we as leaders are selected based on our performance, our values, our vision of the future of the organization and our track record for success.
The same will hold true for those members being selected for a team. The days of where folks get paid to do a job will move away and instead we will have people who are paid to deliver objectives and selection to teams are communal and by leaders AND peers. Teams and leaders will have less and less bench-warmers and more team members who have siginificant clock time. Teams will move to compensation on objectives and more importantly results. Even further in the future I could see compensation of a team to be more communal and based on a meritocracy. Imagine, your teammates and members determine your pay. I know it is a little out there but it will happen. There are already people talking about ways to change the management paradigm. Check out Management Exchange, a community of like-minded leaders who are looking to change today how we manage.
Although technology and this new age of innovation in everything from consumer products to management are changing how we live and work in the world, I still see that real and meaningful connections is the secret sauce to success. This means the teams/companies that win BIG in the marketplace will be the ones that care first. They will care first about their teams who in turn care about the consumers. We, as humans, are always generous to those who think of us, take care of us and show us they love us. Consumers will be generous to teams that care about them and that will result in better results for the owners of the companies.
Who will be the owners of the companies? I am not sure it will be the structure we have today. Having skin in the game is an age-old life truth. Those that are invested are more interested in the success. Giving team members ownership interest in the team that ties directly to their short term and long-term results in a real and sizeable way is what help create the connection between the team and the results. Loose ties through 401(k)s may still exist but they will do so more for altruistic means sake and not as a direct measure to tie to performance. By getting those that have no real interest and steel glad ties in the success of teams/companies/objectives is part of the new world order. Unconnected and uninterested money managers will not be part of the long-term equation. Frankly, having more skin in the game would have made a difference and perhaps prevented the near precipitous of the recent financial crisis. We as human have the innate ability to survive and getting the layers out of successes for a company and therefore our future, ensures those survival skills are closer to the ground and always sensing.
I am excited at all the possibilities of where we are going. I would just encourage everyone to be ready and understand that we can’t look back at what was and wish it could be again. We have to enjoy what is occurring today and be prepared through constant development of ourselves and our relationships and experiences so we are ready for tomorrow.