Concurrent work to address the leadership initiative and the recruitment and retention problem led to some important conceptual developments. The Transition Model (Exhibit 1) is a fundamental conceptual model of several transitions from an older style of management-worker relations to a newer model. The assumption underlying this model is that the traditional hierarchical, command-and-control management style will not work effectively in the information age and the era of the knowledge worker. For an organization to thrive, it must create an environment that attracts people to join and to offer their best everyday. The diagram in Exhibit 1 provides an overview of three key transitions:
from a command-and-control management philosophy to a more collaborativephilosophy,
from an environment where value is placed on the job to one where value is placed on people and their competencies, and
from a workforce that offers compliance to a workforce that favors participation.
This conceptual model has been used to guide other elements of the leadership initiative, e.g., to develop training materials that help build understanding of the changes needed in the way managers and leaders relate to one another. [See Appendix 1 for an example of training materials, viz., excerpts from a reading used in the Positional Leadership Initiative (see Exhibit 3).]
The orientation at 3M is that successful implementation of these transitions will be achieved through a change process that appeals to the head and the heart, not through non-volitional, mandated imperatives. Moreover, this change requires understanding and acceptance of the transitions by both those in nominal leadership positions (i.e., IT managers) and those not in nominal leadership positions (i.e., IT professionals).
Understanding and acceptance by IT Professionals is built through the Personal Leadership Curriculum, which is driven by the Personal Leadership Model (see Exhibit 2). Personal leadership includes eight skills identified for successfully transforming IT: initiative, emotional self-management, cooperation, customer service orientation, self-confidence, achievement orientation, flexibility, and interpersonal understanding. Example behaviors for each skill are defined for IT professionals. Lyla Campbell, Employee Development Manager within IT Education and Performance Services, and others at 3M identified the behavior attributes in a focused workshop setting by asking the questions: “How do good, contributing employees behave? What do they look like?”
Personal Leadership Model
The following model is a representation of what good Personal Leadership looks like. It represents skills needed by all of us in today’s work world. It is intended to be used both as a guide and as a self-assessment tool for on-going Personal Development.
Definition: Preference for taking action; doing more than is required or expected; finding and creating new opportunities.
If I see something that I can do that needs to be done, I do it; I do not wait for others to tell me what needs to be done.