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管理

未来职场:让我们向HR说再见?

Rick Wartzman 2015年05月06日

随着越来越多的公司逐渐要求团队领导者担当起更多的评估下属、指导下属的职权,人力资源部门的角色正在发生变化。

    德勤会计师事务所最近披露称,该公司重新设计了绩效管理方法,以期完善这个每年耗时近200万个小时但效果不佳的管理流程。这家专业服务巨头表示,新制度将包含的内容,以及将要舍弃的内容,可能会让人们感到吃惊。

    然而,与“内容”同样值得注意的,是“谁”来负责这项工作。

    德勤计划以一种更大的紧迫感,向每个团队领导者提供更多工具,使他们可以至少每周评估一次所有直接下属的工作情况。

    在最近的一期《哈佛商业评论》中,德勤的领导者发展总监阿什利•古道尔对该公司的这项新举措进行了一番解释:“这类简短的对话可以阐明领导者对每一位团队成员的期望与原因,告诉他们什么是出色的工作,以及在未来几天内每个人如何做到最好。”

    目前,大公司的管理方式正在发生变化:团队领导者获得了(在个别例子中,使用“夺取”一词更准确)更多评估和指导下属的责任与自主权,德勤正处在这一趋势的最前沿。在这一趋势当中,团队领导者正在接管传统意义上属于公司人力资源部的职能。

    马库斯•白金汉表示:“我们现在有机会将权力合理分配到团队领导者手中。”白金汉与古道尔共同撰写了这篇发表在《哈佛商业评论》的文章,他的公司TMBC在为德勤提供咨询。(提示:白金汉是笔者经营的德鲁克研究会顾问委员会成员,也是笔者的好友。)

    在大多数公司仍在执行的传统组织结构中,人力资源部负责进行每年一次或两次的绩效评估。当反馈传达给一线管理者时,往往因为滞后而失去了作用。

    白金汉表示:“评估信息最重要的听众是团队领导者,但他们往往无法及时得到这些信息。对于一家公司来说,真正的工作是在局部小环境中展开的。”

    在德勤和其他采用这种方式的公司,首先由每一位团队成员进行在线自我评估,这将增强团队领导者评估的效果。这种方法使员工可以开发和了解自身的优势,与他们的上司和其他同事分享自己的见解。

    自动提醒可以确保团队领导者每周获得一批数据,使他或她可以回答下面三个问题,衡量和帮助刺激下属的积极性与工作效率:我的每一位下属有什么优点和能力?他们这一周在做什么工作(暗含的意思是,他们的工作与能力是否匹配)?以及他们本周的感受如何?

    绩效管理并非唯一一个越来越多地由团队领导者负责的活动。许多公司也在用相同的方式处理目标设定、员工调查、培训甚至招聘等任务。

    戴维•哈塞尔表示:“改变确实在发生。”哈塞尔是web软件开发商15Five公司的CEO,该公司的软件旨在改善员工与上司的沟通。

    有两个因素正在推动这种转变。首先,日益增加的压力迫使公司更快行动,而典型的公司官僚组织根本无法做到做到这一点。

    When Deloitte revealed recently that it was redesigning its approach to performance management—hoping to fix a process that chews up nearly 2 million hours a year but yields crummy results—the professional services giant suggested that people might be surprised by “what we’ll include” in the new system “and what we won’t.”

    As notable as the “what,” however, is the “who.”

    Deloitte plans to give more tools, along with more of a sense of urgency, to individual team leaders so that they can conduct formal check-ins with all of their direct reports at least once a week.

    “These brief conversations … provide clarity regarding what is expected of each team member and why, what great work looks like, and how each can do his or her best work in the upcoming days,” Ashley Goodall, Deloitte’s director of leader development, explained in the current issue ofHarvard Business Review, where he laid out the initiative.

    Deloitte is at the fore of a trend that is changing how major companies are managed: Team leaders are being offered—and, in some instances, simply seizing—more responsibility and autonomy in evaluating and guiding the people who work for them. As part of this movement, they are taking over functions that have traditionally been the province of corporate HR.

    “We now have the opportunity to put power right into the hands of the team leader,” says Marcus Buckingham, who wrote the HBR article with Goodall and whose company, TMBC, has been advising Deloitte. (Full disclosure: Buckingham is a member of the board of advisors of the Drucker Institute, which I run, and he is a friend.)

    Under the classic corporate hierarchy to which most businesses still adhere, HR centrally administers a performance evaluation once or twice a year. By the time feedback filters down to front-line managers, it’s often too backward-looking to be useful.

    “The most important audience for this information is the person who doesn’t get any of it in a timely way—the team leader,” says Buckingham. “The real work of a company happens in microclimates.”

    In the case of Deloitte, as well as other organizations using Buckingham’s methods, team leader check-ins are augmented by an initial online self-assessment taken by every member of the group. The instrument allows employees to explore and understand their strengths and share those insights with their supervisor and other colleagues.

    Automated reminders then ensure that the team leader is given a weekly dose of data, making it possible for him or her to answer three questions shown to measure and help spur engagement and productivity: What are the strengths and capabilities of each of my people? What are they doing this week (and, implicitly, how does that match up with their strengths)? And how are they feeling this week?

    Performance management isn’t the only activity undertaken directly by a growing number of team leaders. Goal-setting, surveying workers, training, and even hiring are increasingly being handled in much the same manner.

    “There’s definitely a shift happening,” says David Hassell, the CEO of 15Five, a company that makes web-based software to improve communication between employees and their managers.

    Two factors are fueling this transformation. First, pressure is rising for companies to move much faster than the typical corporate bureaucracy can facilitate.

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