You loved me as a loser, but now you’re worried that I just might win. You know the way to stop me, but you don’t have the discipline. How many nights I prayed for this, to let my work begin.
Leonard Cohen, First We Take Manhattan
1. Ask legal department approval. Legal counselors would almost always say no to any question that starts with”Can I do that?”. they lose nothing from slowing down the business and might lose something only if they permit you to do something that turns out to be “Risky”.
Internal lawyers are even worst than external ones. While the the external ones might bill by the hour, they know you can switch contractors. Lawyers always look for the exceptions and rare cases , trying to mitigate risks. Risks for them, not for you.
2. Treat all employees the same way. Once there is an employee or a business who is under-performing there is no point in treating him like the rest. It means that the hard-working, successful business units would develop antagonism toward you as a manager.Nobody like a coward who makes them suffer the results.
3. Let Facilities make business decisions. Of course the facilities department would prefer an open space. They are not measured on employee’s productivity or product delivery. It is very easy to measure floor space per employee, but much harder to measure the reduced productivity. BTW, one just needs to read “Peopleware” and the “Furniture Police” chapter to get the numbers right.
4. Mix external reasoning to take bad business decisions. Keep using tax reasons as an important factor in organizational decisions. Buy bad or expensive products from companies because you sell a lot of your products to them.
5. Try to optimize globally . Don’t empower your managers with budget ,priority and responsibility. Instead move the decisions to a central function, working remotely which is unaware of local conditions and business goals.
6. Say “Governance” five times a day. Can switch with “Liability” , “Risk Mitigation” , “Corporate Process” . These words are loved by developers and are sure to promote real innovation.
7.Publicly punish employees stray away from the process, it teaches the organization an important lesson.
This Dilbert study might be helpful as well 🙂