Values Towards Ethical and Radical Management
Beliefs, attitudes, aspirations, and values for managers.
Beliefs, attitudes, aspirations, and values for managers. Build teams that are safe, healthy, productive and resilient; build management that is humane, ethical and anti-oppression.
Role and Responsibilities
“Manager” is not an honorific, it is my job description.
My first and only priority is to make my team successful.
The honesty, safety, productivity and dignity of my team is more important than my personal comfort.
I am an equal member and part of my team. I am not the smartest, the most competent, or the most knowledgeable person on my team. I do not feel the need to be the smartest, the most competent or the most knowledgeable person on my team.
It is not my job to come up with the best ideas and strategies for my team. It is my job to facilitate my team developing the best ideas and strategies together.
It is not my job to decide what my team needs to be successful. It is my job to facilitate my team deciding what they need to be successful, together, and creating those conditions, together.
I will build a diverse team.
I recognize that management is a site in which the endemic inequality and oppression in my industry is reproduced, and I am dedicated to understanding and working to end that inequality and oppression.
I will ensure that the people on my team are being paid at least market rate. I will continually check and correct pay inequity on my team.
I work to understand sexism, racism, cissexism, homophobia, heteronormativity, ableism, classism and other forms of oppression, both individually and intersectionally, and how they affect my industry and workplace.
I interrogate my own privilege and how privilege is functioning in my workplace and industry every fucking day.
I understand that the economic, personal and political power I have over my team impacts every interaction we have.
I understand how microaggressions work in the performance of power and how they affect people and systems, and I constantly strive to eliminate microaggressions on my team.
I will not yell at anyone on my team for any reason, ever. I will not physically intimidate anyone on my team for any reason, ever. I will not engage in any acts of verbal, physical or sexual violence against anyone on my team, nor allow that violence to happen anywhere within it.
I am an avid student of power dynamics and I work to tear down negative power dynamics in my team and company.
Teams and Team Building
Team building exercises do not build teams. Doing good work together in ethical and humane ways is the only relevant team building exercise.
Bonding activities and behaviors that exclude any member of the team are not bonding, they are alienation.
I am not above the performance of any administrative or other duties on my team, and nor is any other member of my team.
I understand the concept of in and out groups and how they are created. I can interpret in and out groups in my workplace and I work to bridge them.
A multiplicity of experiences exist within teams. Some people on my team may be having very good experiences and others may be having very bad experiences. Just because some people on my team are having good experiences does not mean that the bad experiences of other teammembers are somehow less real or valid.
I do not dominate the conversation on my team and I do not feel the need to dominate the conversation on my team. I will not interrupt or speak over the people on my team.
I will pay attention to how much each person on my team speaks or is allowed to speak, and will work to make sure that each person has the time, space, safety and respect they need to speak openly.
I want people on my team to tell the truth.
I will believe the self-reports of employees about their experiences.
I will not punish anyone on my team for speaking their truth and I will not allow anyone on my team to be punished for speaking their truth.
I will speak my truth.
I help my team to develop non-violent communication and productive approaches to conflict. I will face conflict and help my team to express and resolve conflict.
I will work with each individual on my team to learn their personal goals for career development. I will devote myself to helping them achieve those goals.
If I, my team, or my company can not facilitate the career development of any individual employee for any reason, I will be honest and upfront about it.
I will work to address, remediate and ultimately minimize the collateral damage of my mistakes, which will be many.
I will help the managers around me become better managers. If my company does not have a good system for promoting and educating managers, I will use my influence to help develop that.
I accept that I might not be the right person to manage my team, now or at some point in the future. I understand that it is possible, now or in the future, that the best thing I can do for my team is to not manage them.
I will make sure that safe mechanisms are in place for my team to provide feedback to me and the larger management structure about my performance.
I will ensure that my team has access to, and a relationship with, other managers at my company and official HR representatives.
I will make sure that individuals on my team are educated about their rights in the workplace and how they can address and escalate issues, both to me directly and through channels that don’t require my awareness or participation.
I understand that culture is mainly comprised of the things no one will say.
Culture is about power dynamics, unspoken priorities and beliefs, mythologies, conflicts, enforcement of social norms, creation of in/out groups and distribution of wealth and control inside companies.
Dignity, security, work-life balance, achievement, autonomy and growth are the only perks that matter.
No methodology is a panacea. Every methodology is problematic. No methodology is a substitute for effective management. All methodology applied uncritically will fail.
I will work to expose, interrogate and improve the actual culture of my team, workplace and industry.
The only basis for a healthy culture is a shared stance of critical consciousness.
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