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商业 - 科技

心理治疗师为硅谷公司把脉

JP Mangalindan 2014年04月25日

理查德•哈格伯格是一位心理治疗师,他的客户都是Twitter、eBay和Dropbox这些公司的高层。他近身观察这些商界精英的工作方式、管理实践,发现他们的长处和短板,根据他们的需求量身订做培训方案,帮助他们成为更出色的领导者。

    哈格伯格从2012年年初开始为Dropbox首席执行官德鲁•休斯顿(左侧,右侧为该公司联合创始人兼首席技术官阿拉什•费尔多西)提供培训服务。休斯顿说:“它就像一面力量非常强大的镜子,能让你对自己一览无余。”

    理查德•哈格伯格要价不菲——每位顾客每年3万美元。但后者可能会说,理查德提供的服务物有所值。

    身为心理学家,哈格伯格在35年的职业生涯里一直在培训企业管理人员,目的是让他们成为更好的领导者。经他培训的高管已经超过5000人,其中许多都在知名科技公司任职,比如Twitter、微软(Microsoft)、eBay和文件共享服务供应商Dropbox。哈格伯格让这些管理者磨练的技能包括授权、调解冲突和做出决断,虽然这些听起来似乎不费吹灰之力,但对企业的长期发展而言这些管理技能至关重要,特别是考虑到目前,初创型公司经常因为在创新上败给竞争对手而倒闭。

    哈格伯格住在华盛顿惠德贝岛,有大约20位客户。每隔一周,哈格伯格就会乘飞机前往旧金山湾区,和其中几名客户见面。哈格伯格指出,首次走上领导岗位的创业者经常走极端——他们或者怯于做出决策,或者正好相反,只注重微观管理。

    他说:“这样做的结果是,他们自己会精疲力尽,他们的公司也会陷入混乱。”

    获得某位高管聘用后,哈格伯格就会让他接受一系列测试。其中一项测试能发现客户的近50种性格特征,比如乐观程度、独立性以及冒险倾向。【作为哈格伯格的顾客之一,Dropbox首席执行官德鲁•休斯顿打趣说:“这就像迈尔斯-布里格斯(Myers-Briggs)基于人体激素的性格测试。”】

    另一项测试的绰号是“360”,内容是从不超过20个人那里获得关于客户的反馈,包括公司投资人、联合创始人和下属。哈格伯格会向客户介绍他收集到的所有数据,指出后者的优点和缺点,同时提出个性化的方案来改善客户的管理技能。

    哈格伯格说:“这个方案必需符合客户的性格。如果他极度害羞,而他的公司即将首发上市,他需要出面参与路演。这样的话,他就可能需要克服在公众场合发言的恐惧感,或者说社交焦虑症。”  

    

    At a going rate of $30,000 a year per client, Richard Hagberg doesn't come cheap. But his clients might argue his services are worth the price.

    A trained psychologist, Hagberg has spent the last 35 years of his career as an executive management coach training over 5,000 executives to become better leaders. Many of them work at well-known technology companies, such as Twitter (TWTR), Microsoft (MSFT), eBay (EBAY), and Dropbox. And while the skills he has them hone -- delegating, dealing with conflicts, decisiveness -- may sound like no-brainers, they're vital to the long-term prospects of a company, particularly in an era where startups often live and die by out-innovating their competitors.

    Entrepreneurs often go to extremes when managing for the first time: They either shy away from making decisions, or they go to the other end and just micromanage, explained Hagberg, who flies from his Whidbey Island, Wash., home to the San Francisco Bay Area every other week to meet with several of his 20 or so clients.

    "As a result, they end up burning out, and they end up having organizational chaos," he adds.

    Once an executive hires Hagberg, he puts that client through a series of tests. One test screens the client for nearly 50 different personality elements, such as degrees of optimism, independence, and risk-taking. ("It's like a Myers-Briggs personality test on steroids," quipped Dropbox CEO Drew Houston, one of Hagberg's clients.)

    Another test, dubbed the "360," involves getting feedback about the client from up to 20 people: company investors, co-founders, and subordinates. All the data Hagberg collects are brought together in a presentation that he gives to the client. It outlines his or her strengths and weaknesses, and offers a customized plan that Hagberg will use to improve the client's management skills.

    "The plan needs to accommodate your personality," explained Hagberg. "If you're extremely shy, your company is going to IPO, and you need to go out there and do a roadshow, that may require some work for you to get over your fear of public speaking, or your general social anxiety."   

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