Exploring cities and going to the theater are two of my favorite things to do in the entire world, and it’s hard to beat New York City as a destination for both. Despite loving the theater, I find walking around Broadway, the beating heart of New York’s theater district, to be one of the most anxiety-inducing and chaotic experiences a person can have.
Last but not least in my BBC binge review is the sweet, slightly sad sitcom The IT Crowd, which can serve as a cautionary tale about what happens when you neglect the very employees who keep your business up and running.
To TV audiences who automatically associate reality television with manufactured drama, outlandish antisocial behavior, and cruel criticism bordering on abuse, The Great British Bake Off is a breath of fresh air – or more accurately a breath of healthy competition and good sportsmanship. And while the judges, Mary and Paul, have to provide critique and make an elimination in every episode, they do so in a way that demonstrates utmost respect and consideration for the efforts and skills of the contestants.
This winter I was on a big BBC kick, and a few series left me with more substantial takeaways than just their pure entertainment value. They’ve also inspired some interesting insights into honest communication, strategies for productive meetings, and beneficial management practices.
Books, movies, television shows, and advice columns have provided endless examples of pathologically bad managers – sometime played for laughs, sometimes played for horrors. Most bad managers are ineffective for far less dramatic reasons: they were never taught or mentored on how to be a manager, or they never wanted to be a manager in the first place.
The case study described how one company developed a standardized approach to project management to increase management capacity, resulting in a marked decrease in quality issues, including fewer missed deadlines and a decrease in cost overruns.
Learning to delegate is a critical skill for anyone who seeks to increase professional responsibility and authority, or serve in any sort of management or leadership position. While it is not an easy skill to master, I do have some tips for making it a less painful and more productive transition for everyone involved.