“A desk is a dangerous place from which to view the world.”
- John Le Carré
Laptops, smart phones, instant information. It’s so easy to be knowledgeable with facts, data, worldwide connections, instant access. I, for one, am hooked. Ease of communications and access to so much information appeals to a curious person like myself.
Yet, I’m reminded of the concept “management by walking around” popularized by business guru Tom Peters. It’s a big premise he underscored in his classic book “In Search of Excellence.” It’s all about getting away from our desk, our electronics and listening, talking, walking among staff, to gauge the pulse, the tenor of the workplace. Observe and perceive the joy, laughter, tension, intensity of staff -- understand the true heart and soul of an organization by noticing the nuances and experiencing first hand with all five senses. It gives us a snapshot of the “state of the union” at work.
There are too many disconnects and misunderstandings from text chats and emails. Perhaps it is time to take a walk among your teammates, and with eyes and ears “view the world” differently. Maybe I’m an old fashioned “Boomer,” but I believe this practice is worth remembering … ‘MBWA - management by walking around.’