A couple of pieces from the FT recently highlighting the spotlight that has fallen on the quality of management in the UK. The first one [£] takes ministers to task for their (possibly unfounded, or even downright wrong) complaints about people who are WFH.
The reality is that this issue is putting a spotlight on managers who value presenteeism instead of quality an productivity. It also notices how managers are complaining that they can’t be brown-nosed any more, so how do they know who to promote?
However, what all of this misses is that many of these factors – startling discoveries to people who have been employed formally for most of their working lives – have always been front-and-centre for freelancers – often people who are both highly productive and easily disposable.
And that links nicely to the second post about hierarchy [£]. Again, something that have been very clearly foregrounded by the pandemic and WFH. Linking to the menopause policy issue posted about earlier here, it looks at how inappropriate hierarchies are being increasingly challenged on a range of equality grounds.
“Changes in attitudes towards hierarchy are the biggest unspoken challenge in the world of work over the past 20 years. Many people under the age of 40 (and definitely under the age of 30) resist the idea of hierarchy altogether.”
There’s also this, from David Brooks in The Atlantic (generally picking over the whole question of ‘wokeness’ dominating the left while ersatz versions of ‘blue collar concerns’ are adopted by the right).
The FT paraphrases it (in an also-useful article entitled “It’s time for candid conversations at work[£]“) as saying that…
“by navigating a progressive cultural frontier more skilfully than their hapless Boomer bosses and by calling out the privilege of those above them, young, educated elites seek power within elite institutions. “Wokeness becomes a way to intimidate Boomer administrators and wrest power from them,””