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A Guide to Success for Technical Managers: Supervising in Research, Development, and Engineering

ISBN: 978-1-118-09773-1
318 pages
March 2011
A Guide to Success for Technical Managers: Supervising in Research, Development, and Engineering (1118097734) cover image

Description

Supervisory Skills for the Technical Manager: A Guide to Success focuses exclusively on the dynamics of being a technical manager such as a scientist, programmer, or engineer. An R&D environment demands modified management techniques and this book explores how to do so. 

Drawing of years of experience to provide technical managers with various tools and ways to apply them in supervisory situation, this essential title includes exercises, templates and checklists to accelerate their uses and applications on the job.  In addition, case studies are included throughout to thoroughly explain and explore the concepts discussed.

Key topics include handing the transition to supervising others in research and development, the characteristics needed to motivate personnel in a R&D environment as compared to other areas of business are detailed.  The pitfalls and challenges of managing technical personnel, how delegating can build an effective team that can produce superior results, and how to monitor the work of previously independent personnel are also discussed.

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Table of Contents

PREFACE xi

CHAPTER 1 TIPS ON TRANSITIONS FOR TECHNICAL MANAGERS 1

Transition Situations 1

Manager or Scientist? An Attribute Inventory 6

Manager–Scientist Inventory Score Sheet 10

Interpretation 12

Questions to Ask Yourself 12

Transition Situations—Solutions 13

References 14

Bibliography 14

CHAPTER 2 ADVICE ON CREATING A MOTIVATING CLIMATE 17

Motivation Situation 17

What Motivates You? 18

Why Is Motivation Important? 21

Diagnosing Motivation 22

Applying Theories about Motivation 22

Motivation Situation—Solution 28

References 29

Bibliography 29

CHAPTER 3 HINTS TO INCREASE INTERPERSONAL EFFECTIVENESS 31

Interpersonal Effectiveness—My Story 31

The Myers–Briggs Type Indicator 32

Using Type Effectively 34

Applying Characteristics of Type 39

Role of Emotions and Trust 43

References 46

Bibliography 46

CHAPTER 4 CLUES ABOUT COMMUNICATION PITFALLS AND STRATEGIES 49

Communication Situation 49

Communication Patterns and Factors 50

The AIDR Technique 55

Focusing on Others—A Development Experiment 56

Ask Questions 57

Challenge Assumptions 58

Email 58

Email Guide 59

Applying the MBTI 60

Planning a Personal Communication Strategy 63

Communication Situation—Suggestions 64

References 64

Bibliography 65

CHAPTER 5 SECRETS TO MANAGING PERFORMANCE 67

Performance Situation 67

Setting Expectations and Goals 68

Consider Personal Styles—Both Yours and Your Employee’s 71

Managing Performance 74

Performance Problem Solving 76

Dealing with Performance Issues 76

Managing a Performance Issue 77

Distinguishing between Observations and Conclusions 78

Performance Conversation Checklist 80

Tackling Recurring Problems 81

Performance Issue Linked to Technical Problems 81

Managing Managers 83

Suggested Answers for Distinguishing between Observations and Conclusions 86

References 87

Bibliography 87

CHAPTER 6 INCREASING EFFECTIVENESS THROUGH DELEGATION 89

Delegation Situation 89

Delegation Choices 90

Delegation Benefits 91

Delegation Analysis 93

Delegation Profile 95

Planning for Delegation 96

Styles of Delegation 97

Relation of U/E to Delegation Style 101

Delegation Checklist 102

Delegation Using Type 104

Temperaments 107

Applying New Concepts and Skills 108

Delegation Situation—Solution 109

Delegation Choices—Suggestions 109

References 110

Bibliography 110

CHAPTER 7 POINTS FOR SUCCEEDING AS A COACH 113

Coaching Success 113

Building Connections 114

How Do Star Performers Network? 115

Group Social Networks 115

Challenging the Status Quo 117

Looking Forward 121

Suggestions for Development Activities 122

Coaching Success—Solution 131

References 132

Bibliography 132

CHAPTER 8 TECHNIQUES TO MANAGE GROUPS, TEAMS, AND MEETINGS 135

Facilitation Situation 135

Building Collaboration 136

Role Clarification Activity 137

Goal Clarification Activity 138

Group Operating Principles or Norms 138

Increasing Meeting Effectiveness 139

Individual Autonomy versus Group Interdependence 140

Decision Making 142

Meeting Management Techniques 143

Application: Your Own Meeting 147

Facilitation Situation—Suggestions 149

References 150

Bibliography 151

CHAPTER 9 CLUES TO FOSTER CREATIVITY AND INNOVATION 153

Sam’s Dilemma 153

Social and Educational Input on Creativity 154

Raising the Bar for Creativity and Innovation 155

Definitions: Creativity and Innovation 156

Sam’s Dilemma—Resolved 166

References 167

Bibliography 168

CHAPTER 10 POINTERS ON MANAGING PROJECTS AND DECISIONS 171

Project Support 171

So, What Can You Do? 173

Learn the Basics of Project Management 173

Understand and Take Advantage of Different Approaches to Project Planning 173

Challenge What Does Not Make Sense 175

Consider the Difference between Risk and Uncertainty 175

Look for Ways to Improve Communication in Your Project 176

Avoid Going for the Big Bang—Prioritize and Proceed Incrementally 177

Be Assertive and Work to Kill a Project That Should Die 180

Use Consensus Wisely and Make Timely Decisions 181

Project Support—Suggestions 186

References 187

Bibliography 188

CHAPTER 11 SUGGESTIONS FOR MANAGING UP 191

Managing Up Stories 191

Build Your Relationship 193

Manage Communication 194

Guidelines to Approach Your Boss 197

Guidelines for Receiving Feedback 198

Managing Up Stories—Resolved 201

References 203

Bibliography 204

CHAPTER 12 LET’S USE IT RIGHT: A SUMMARY OF SUGGESTED APPROACHES 205

References 215

FIFTY-TWO-WEEK LEADERSHIP JOURNAL 217

INDEX 315

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Author Information

Elizabeth Treher, PhD, has held technical leader roles in industry, government, and academia and has more than seventy publications and patents, including two books: The Pharmaceutical Business and Strategic Partnering. For the last twenty years, as CEO of The Learning Key, she has consulted with technology-based companies to develop curricula to build managerial and project leadership skills.

David Piltz has over fifteen years' experience in training managers and supervisors, both technical and non-technical. David has developed and designed over seventy-five modules on communication, management and supervision, facilitation, and delegation. He has also worked with numerous managers and executives on increasing their supervisory effectiveness.

Steven Jacobs is a consultant to biotech and pharmaceutical companies. He trains and coaches international clinical development teams to avoid and mitigate cultural problems and delays due to communication and conflict, and has also helped companies improve clinical supplies team dynamics, process efficiencies, and overall delivery performance. His senior roles have included those of COO and CEO.

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