Destroy the real expert
As a Leader you must always be in charge and surround yourself with those who will support your game.
If you’re willing to play a long game you can rise even higher on the talent and success of those who are so absorbed in their achievements that by the time they realise you are stealing and taking credit for their work it will be too late for them to do anything about it.
First you need to find the ideal person for creating and leading a truly challenging and significant project. This person must be excellent at their job but must also have the talent and contacts to find the best people to develop the project. The project could be anything from a massive training initiative, a major organisational culture change, developing and marketing a new product, or even creating an entire 3-year university degree.
You will need to give the person time to ensure the project is highly successful, very visible and generally held in high respect. Once it is well established and still growing you need to make your move.
Compliance is always a good way to get these people. Experts who achieve great things often view much compliance activity as a pure waste of resources and time (which you and I know is often true) so they will have been putting minimal effort into just the amount of compliance needed so that they can continue to focus on their passion.
There will be policies and procedures that they won’t have been following to the letter. You can start demanding that they spend time updating their localised procedures to fall in line with the organisational policy.
Naturally, you quietly create new policies and ensure they are available to all. But it’s important that you mask the availability by using an intranet that is labyrinthine and consequently confusing. Any attempt to find your new or updated policies will be abandoned in frustration at the time wasted and the inability to find the required policies (especially as the policy titles are a poor reflection of their content). Of course, not much time will be wasted by people looking for the policies because you won’t have told them that they’re there. Doesn’t matter, because you’re still in a position to say, for example, “Well, you should have known about the policy, it has been available on the intranet for the last 18 months”. They can’t argue with that last statement. Checkmate!
If you do this enough, they will often leave voluntarily. But if they don’t you have used their non-compliance to create grounds for giving them a wonderful opportunity to diverse their workplace experience … somewhere else.
Inspiration for this comes from Australia’s Liberal Party, sections of the Labor Party, One Nation, and various others.
The darkness arises with the dawn
waking with fell purpose bred in festering dreams.
Soulless vapour cloaks its empty blackness
in a facade of humanity with skin all soft and cream.
A suit and shoes, briefcase and accessories added,
accoutrement of political mundanity worn with guile,
effective deceit oozes smiles into the day
and charms with urbanity as its disguise.
The cloakéd darkness welcomes your despite –
there is no heart within, which you can hurt –
and its enduring immunity to your cries
intends the wearied indifference of your spirit.
Its awful purpose pierces through each day’s future
stealthily weaving insidious worship of greed;
self-interest and entitlement are what it nurtures
and the pain of the unfortunate feeds its need.
All words of comfort and pure intent,
they wield with surgical precision,
slicing deep into the heart of your fears,
and, seduced, you hear not their silent derision.
They follow only a path of self-absorbed ego
emboldened by the strength of dark alliances
which entice such beings their souls to forgo
in exchange for the power to shape their dalliances.
A game to them is this play with your heart
and seeping of poison into your mind,
their sepulchral smiles won from your hurt
as they turn you stealthily from your own kind.
[ 30 Aug 2018, still a work in progress ]
A sign of a brilliant manager is your ability to take a word that can have deep significance to people and give it prominence in your organisation by linking it to projects, logos, “values”, and the frequent use of fatuous jargon. Your ability to force this use of a word on the minions below will signal your alpha status.
Take “Champion” (it must have the capital), for example. It has strong links to sport and much of our population are addicted to sport and suck up its jargon unquestioningly. It also has the suggestion that you’re on people’s side and that you’re fighting for them.
Your triumph comes when you can force people to link it to something as mundane as moving office. The whole process of moving office and enduring the building works on site will be so much better and easier because you know that there is a Move Champion.
The scramble to get a car park brought on by a large parking area being closed will be bearable because you have a Move Champion fighting, somewhere, for you. Just knowing that there’s a Move Champion will help you cope so much more easily with the extra traffic in the area.
If you get shovelled into a smaller office and have nowhere to store all the compliance documents you’re supposed to store – don’t worry, there’s a Move Champion. Just knowing that there’s a Move Champion out there … somewhere … doing it for you, makes all the difference.