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管理权下放:劳动新军呼唤开源管理

AnandPillai 2011年09月23日

新一代的劳动者更关注自我抱负的实现,为了适应这种变化,公司的管理者们应该更多地允许员工参与到管理事务中来,共同解决现代企业面对的挑战。

    20009年年中,严酷的现实更加明显:全球经济的低迷将继续延续并持续深化。我的公司HCL Technologies面临两难的抉择。我们一直告诉公司的5.5万名员工说,他们是我们成功的关键。然而,为了降低运营成本,裁掉其中几百人看来在所难免。

    当时公司首席执行官维尼特•纳亚尔直截了当地告诉全体员工,我们要么削减1亿美元的支出,要么进行大幅裁员。面对这个挑战,我们的员工——而不是管理团队——完成了一些惊人的创举。他们齐心协力,提出76项构想,在没有裁员的情况下帮助公司节省了2.6亿美元。其中一项重要的建议是取消弹性工作时间,这个措施帮助公司节省大量电力和运输成本。这件事情是“开源”领导模式发挥作用的一个缩影。

    两年后,世界各地的机构组织都已经意识到,劳动大军的最新成员,也就是通常被成为“Y一代”或“千禧一代”的年轻人,拥有不可遏制的能量和创新思维能力,往往能够提出新颖而且常常是激进的创意,帮助公司在面对巨大困难的时候仍然能取得成功。上文的例子强调了一个重要的问题——有时候我们需要做的只是征求一下员工们的意见。出于这个理由,我认为等级制结构已经不能适应现代企业面临的挑战,因为在这些机构里创意几乎只来自最高层,这样会压抑创新、创造力和责任感。

    其中释放的信号很简单:如果我们希望充分利用、培养和挽留有才华的员工,我们必须进行调整以实现新一代的抱负。

    看看Facebook吧。这家公司堪称废除传统等级制度的先锋。Facebook并没有让特定的个人担任领导职位,而是根据具体情况和员工个人的才干,由不同的员工挺身而出,担当领导角色。处于高层的传统领导人则承担着鼓励各层次新晋领导人的重要职责。

    维基百科也是一个很好的例子,它向我们展示了一个优秀的协作论坛。学术界曾经不遗余力地质疑维基解密的可靠性。谁能想到,有朝一日这个网站会成为获取知识的重要途径之一。

    In mid-2009, as it became painfully evident that the global recession would be sustained and deep, my company, HCL Technologies, faced a significant dilemma. We'd been telling our 55,000 employees that they were the key to our success. But to reduce operational costs, it seemed certain that we were going to have to lay off hundreds of them.

    That's when CEO VineetNayar told all employees point-blank that we had to cut expenses by $100 million, or cut jobs substantially. Faced with this challenge, it was our employees -- not the executive team -- that did something truly amazing. They banded together and developed 76 ideas to save the company $260 million with no layoffs. One significant idea was to abolish flextime hours, which led to a massive savings on electricity and transportation costs. This was the epitome of the "open source" leadership model in action.

    Two years later, organizations around the world have come to appreciate that the latest addition to the workforce -- often referred to as Generation Y or Millennials -- are equipped with an irrepressible energy and the ability to suggest new and often radical ideas to attain success during times of great challenge. The example above underscores one key point -- employees sometimes just need to be asked for their opinion. For this reason, I believe that hierarchical leadership structures where ideas almost exclusively come from the very top are ill equipped to tackle today's organizational challenges as they discourage innovation, creativity, and accountability.

    The message is seemingly simple: we must adapt to meet the aspirations of the upcoming generations if we intend to fully take advantage of, develop, and retain talented employees.

    Consider Facebook. Organizationally, it is the vanguard of a dismantled traditional hierarchy. Instead of specific individuals holding leadership positions, different people step forward to lead, depending on the situation and their individual talents. The traditional leader at the apex then is given the critical responsibility of encouraging new leaders at every level.

    Wikipedia is another great example of a prominent collaborative forum. Who would have believed that it could become a lifeline of knowledge, despite all attempts by academia to question its credibility?

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