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Thread: NT Leadership

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    Default NT Leadership

    As an ENTJ-influenced ENTP who finds himself in charge of lots of people quite often along with his ENTJ colleagues, we often seem to find ourselves being put up against the wall and shot by the 'nice squad' for daring to think that, as the boss, it might just be part of our job to tell people to do things.

    Ha! No, no, no, what were we thinking! We have to ASK people, of course! I mean, what kind of moron thinks that just because he has a billion things to coordinate and dozens of deadlines, and just because he has a load of underlings who seem to prefer to scratch their arses and play WoW all day while people are waiting for them to communicate something, that he has a right to occasionally give the staff a gentle, yet well-deserved bollocking without them bursting into tears and quitting?

    And what, I mean what people, kind of leader can REALLY function in an environment where people are constantly threatening to quit over the omission of a 'please' or 'thank you'?

    Trouble is that leadership requires Te, and Te and democracy just don't get along. They're mutually exclusive, IMO. But it seems every damn office has to be a democratic commune these days ffs...

    Can people please tell me just exactly how they expect a guy to get anything done whilst constantly stopping to consult everyone as to their job satisfaction, whether they feel they have 'ownership' of the projects they're involved in, and when you're not allowed to simply take it as read that something being part of someone's job description means they're sorta duty bound to do it, without you having to consult them to see if they mind every time before you tell them to do it?
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    OK so this was part rant about my pointlessly crap underlings, but also largely part genuine desire for discussion as to differing expectations of leaders and preferences for styles of leadership, both from those who lead and those who work under them.

    (thank you, please thankyou, if you'd be so kind... heh)
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    Not sure what part to respond to, so I can do a partial counter-rant.

    [counter-rant]
    Leaders are evil by the position they are placed in. They have to prove themselves otherwise in each decision they make.

    Why do I say leaders are evil? It is because they think of human beings in terms of that are de-humanizing (how many "heads" to we have to cut? It's time to trim the "fat", etc.)

    They are willing to sacrifice what their underlings values just to accomplish a mission or objective.

    Underling: I need a couple of days off to help my brother move. My parents are too old to help him.
    Leader: I need to think about it, we have <some inevitable, usually meaningless, deadline> coming up, not sure I can give up the "man-power" (yet another de-humanizing term)

    In modern times, leaders have to convince not command. Keep in mind that the same employee who is a slacker and does the minimum to get by in your organization, may have been a top performer in another, and may again be a top performer in another to come.

    Individuals have varying career goals. If their current job is impeding those goals more than they are enhancing them, they will move their efforts elsewhere. Hobbies, school, and if things get bad, a side-business, a second job, or a high-effort job hunt. If they're openly threatening to quit, then their current jobs are at odds with their career goals (whatever they may be).

    It is tit-for-tat. You work for them as much as they work for you. No matter what the title is. If you suck at removing obstacles from their ability to do their job, you are unlikely to be respected as a boss, since, in their eyes, you are incompetent at your job.

    [/counter-rant]

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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    Not sure what part to respond to, so I can do a partial counter-rant.
    Okay... the second post was the main point actually lol but this is still good...

    They are willing to sacrifice what their underlings values just to accomplish a mission or objective.
    But what the underlings fail to understand is that this mission/objective is the maintenance and advancement of the company on which they all rely for their jobs and their wages, and if they have to stop to take account of every single person on an individual level all the time, the business cannot function properly or compete with others. Worst case scenario: the pub where everyone's happy and everyone loves the landlord and all the staff are appreciated and well paid and given compassionate leave and stuff all the time - but it closes down after a year because they're just not turning enough profit to cover overheads. Then all those happy employees become unhappy unemployed.

    Underling: I need a couple of days off to help my brother move. My parents are too old to help him.
    Leader: I need to think about it, we have <some inevitable, usually meaningless, deadline> coming up, not sure I can give up the "man-power" (yet another de-humanizing term)
    Don't they realise that when they keep taking time off for lame reasons, it means that the bosses are a) less inclined to believe them when it's actually a real reason and b) it means someone else has to do the work they were supposed to do, which, if everyone's allowed to behave this way, results in chaos and the few people left being completely overworked.

    In modern times, leaders have to convince not command. Keep in mind that the same employee who is a slacker and does the minimum to get by in your organization, may have been a top performer in another, and may again be a top performer in another to come.
    Granted. But the ones I'm talking about above have never been great performers in anything, and I took them on to give them a break because nobody else would!

    As for their career goals - if they can find anything better that'll have them, I'll pay their fucking dowry.... lol See, this is where philanthropy gets you.

    It is tit-for-tat. You work for them as much as they work for you.
    Yes... yet strangely, the angle that I'm actually WORKING FOR THEM, that is, that the job I'm trying to do is what their jobs hinge on, and that when they don't do their jobs (without which I can't do mine) they're shooting themselves in the foot as much as they are 'defying' me - seems to pass them by.

    If you suck at removing obstacles from their ability to do their job, you are unlikely to be respected as a boss, since, in their eyes, you are incompetent at your job.

    [/counter-rant]
    It's actually them putting obstacles in front of my ability to do my job. The only obstacle to them doing their job is that they don't actually understand that working means doing it when you don't feel like it as well as when you do, and waiting until break time before 'nipping out' for a doughnut. And then thinking they have a right to not be criticized for it.

    EDIT - oh yeah and plus, I don't see it as anyone else's responsibility to deal with my mental 'obstacles' but mine. When the only obstacle is their laziness, I fail to see how it's my responsibility to see that it's removed; it's a personality flaw, it's for them to deal with and overcome.

    Ah fuck it, I'm firing them. All of them. Bastards.
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    I haven't had that many bosses, but I've had 2 nice bosses I enjoyed working for.
    One was an ENFJ, and the other was an ISFJ.
    Both of them cared about me and made me feel important and valuable.
    Most importantly, they didn't ridicule me or make me feel bad when I made a mistake.

    I will have a part time job next year, and the manager is definitely a T. He's young and says things he shouldn't, but I'm going to take it in stride because I know he can't help himself. I'm sure he's doing the best he can.

    I was in a group led by an ENTJ once. I had a lot of respect for him. I liked him, but he was intimidating.

    I know as a leader, I used to drive people as hard as I drive myself until I learned I'm not supposed to do that. People do appreciate it if you can be gracious.
    Last edited by INTJMom; 10-13-2007 at 09:31 PM. Reason: spelling

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    substitute -

    EDIT - oh yeah and plus, I don't see it as anyone else's responsibility to deal with my mental 'obstacles' but mine. When the only obstacle is their laziness, I fail to see how it's my responsibility to see that it's removed; it's a personality flaw, it's for them to deal with and overcome.

    Ah fuck it, I'm firing them. All of them. Bastards.
    I can relate to the last line - but in my current circumstances it just doesn't work....

    Oh, I can soooooooooo relate. In my various work roles I've felt the same way many times. Now as a student again I am dealing with the FP types who don't want to do anything that doesn't feel right or to be rushed when they find something they "feel is right" - and we have to do team projects.

    They don't want to own their own inability to choose under pressure and to act on something just because it needs to be done. They say "I work best under pressure at the last minute".

    Yet I've still gotta deal with them in the team projects. "Taking charge" doesn't work, nor does influencing strategies that appeal to the intellect.

    I recently discovered a wicked little trick that may transport to other circumstances if somebody has a pet project or role (or their ego is highly attached to some status that comes from being responsible).

    One of my team mates didn't come up with a design for something. She'd opted to do the design because she "wanted to" and she got the main voice in the design because of that. So, all I did was draw up something that was quite different (in strategically chosen ways) from what she came up with.... and said "Oh, well seeing we are running out of time we can do this, of course, you'll still get the main credit - but we need to move along."

    I normally don't like to manipulate - but seeing her reaction AND speed of response was quite impressive. Job done! It is now going to be part of my arsenal....

    But with a big team of "losers" (ie those who self sabotage) it gets harder - it is a culture of what is acceptable that rules. One big US company I worked for said that in the dot-com era, rather than trying to make our company go "dot com", it would have been better to set up a new company and cherry pick the right staff from the old one and outside to do away with the traditional culture that didn't welcome the "new ways".

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    I recently had an interesting debate with Fineline who wrote a pretty cool post. If you havn't allready, and you feel you'r in over your head, perhaps you should consider taking a leadership course.

    In a company, the overall goal is to make money but it's interesting how Fs and Ts get from A to B as leaders.
    The line of reasoning of a T will often be: If we make lots of money, everybody will be happy.
    The line of reasoning for an F will often be: If everybody is happy, we'll make lots of money.

    Both arguments are perfectly valid and both have their strengths and weaknesses. Yet, eventhough I'm a T, the F line of reasoning makes most sense to me as a leader.
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    Quote Originally Posted by substitute View Post
    As an ENTJ-influenced ENTP who finds himself in charge of lots of people quite often along with his ENTJ colleagues, we often seem to find ourselves being put up against the wall and shot by the 'nice squad' for daring to think that, as the boss, it might just be part of our job to tell people to do things.

    Ha! No, no, no, what were we thinking! We have to ASK people, of course! I mean, what kind of moron thinks that just because he has a billion things to coordinate and dozens of deadlines, and just because he has a load of underlings who seem to prefer to scratch their arses and play WoW all day while people are waiting for them to communicate something, that he has a right to occasionally give the staff a gentle, yet well-deserved bollocking without them bursting into tears and quitting?

    And what, I mean what people, kind of leader can REALLY function in an environment where people are constantly threatening to quit over the omission of a 'please' or 'thank you'?

    Trouble is that leadership requires Te, and Te and democracy just don't get along. They're mutually exclusive, IMO. But it seems every damn office has to be a democratic commune these days ffs...

    Can people please tell me just exactly how they expect a guy to get anything done whilst constantly stopping to consult everyone as to their job satisfaction, whether they feel they have 'ownership' of the projects they're involved in, and when you're not allowed to simply take it as read that something being part of someone's job description means they're sorta duty bound to do it, without you having to consult them to see if they mind every time before you tell them to do it?
    Oh yeah... Excellent post.

    This has been bothering me for a while too. My reasoning being "How can the ENTJ still be considered *the* leader type today when it's dominant function, Te, does not work well in a democratic environment?". Basically, in order for the ENTJ to be a good leader, s/he has to indulge in the least favorite function of all for this type... Extraverted Feeling. Using it gives incredible amounts of stress and is draining. It is exhausting to communicate in such a way. Watching what I say and censoring my thoughts is the least enjoyable part of work. It's put me off interacting with many people because I find them too insecure, self-conscious and defensive.

    I think nowadays people are allowed to be so touchy it's ridiculous. It's amazing how people get uptight and angry at some things. Everything in organizations these days is being geared towards manipulating others or "How to get others to do things for you while they feel happy about it". Then they get surprised that people become cynical and distrustful of management when they realize the BS they're being fed. At least, with the straight talking bosses, you know where you stand.

    You can only afford to use full blown Te and get away with it is if you're the Big Boss. The problem is Te doesn't help you in making friends. Te only works well when you have power. Maybe we're better suited for the military. But the problem is that while NT's would probably make great generals, they make pathetic soldiers, so it's real tough to get there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Park View Post
    I recently had an interesting debate with Fineline who wrote a pretty cool post. If you havn't allready, and you feel you'r in over your head, perhaps you should consider taking a leadership course.
    Thanks, I'll check that out. It's not me though, who's in over their head - I've 14 years of leadership experience and running businesses that I own, very successfully and with very few hiccups or spats with staff. I've been called a great boss by a lot of people and had people pestering me for jobs after they've done some voluntary stuff, because they just like working with me.

    The problem is more that certain staff are in over their heads - not because I put them there, but because they insisted on putting themselves there, and they're too over sensitive and emotionally fragile to be able to admit it and either ask for help or let someone else take over. And they don't tell anyone this situation is going on - not because I'm not approachable (I'm the one everyone approaches with messages for the ENTJ precisely because they see me as approachable and he's not), but because their pride and ego are in the way.

    In a company, the overall goal is to make money but it's interesting how Fs and Ts get from A to B as leaders.
    The line of reasoning of a T will often be: If we make lots of money, everybody will be happy.
    The line of reasoning for an F will often be: If everybody is happy, we'll make lots of money.
    Not this company - it's a charitable organisation. The goal is to help people. People can't be helped if the organisation falls apart because certain people aren't doing their jobs.

    My hole that I pick in that F line of reasoning is that in order to make everyone happy, you have to organise your priorities in such a way that means no money gets made, and in the meantime while you're waiting for everyone to decide they're happy, the company goes under due to lack of funds. And then when you try to get funds, you can't get any because nobody will invest, seeing your company now as slow and inefficient.

    Besides which, staff these days seem to have extremely unreaslistic expectations of how 'happy' they have a right to be before they should have to do any work. But none of these things applies to the leaders - we have to just work our nuts off whether we like it or not, while they're supposed to be allowed an afternoon off because they're a bit out of sorts after they realised their credit card was maxed out, or because something X said made them feel "a bit tearful". No matter how 'tearful' or out of sorts I might feel, I have to just plough the fuck ahead and put it all aside.

    I dunno, I just don't see how business can function like that. Whatever happened to leaving your shit at the door and getting on with your work? Especially in a charitable organisation where everyone who is there has CHOSEN to be there and professes to believe in the work and the project. It's not as if we're dealing with a bunch of school leavers who had a limited range of options for entry level jobs. We're talking here about seasoned, highly qualified professionals who could take any job they want.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick View Post
    Oh yeah... Excellent post.
    Somehow, I had a feeling you'd sympathise

    I think it's one of those things where, because of the nature of hierarchies, obviously those who are leaders are in the minority, with few who understand or sympathise with the pressures they face. And part of the problem is, IMO, precisely the fact that we're not allowed to use words like 'hierarchy' any more, and have to pretend like every board meeting is some kind of hippie circle time.

    I just don't get it. When I've worked under people I've been profoundly respectful of the wheels of hierarchy and chain of command, and the importance of respecting it and stuff. And if an ENTP can be with Si as my inferior function, I fail to see why others can't be as well!!

    You can only afford to use full blown Te and get away with it is if you're the Big Boss. The problem is Te doesn't help you in making friends.
    Yes, it means you have to maintain a certain level of distance from the staff and not try to make friends with them. Sorta like Captain Picard does. The minute you start going to their poker games and stuff like that, they begin to see you in more personal terms, and therefore take the things you say in a professional context, more personally. And that's where the troubles begin...
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    by the way I realise I might've caused some confusion by mentioning employees who would be lucky to get any other job, and then also talking about seasoned professionals - just to clarify, these are two separate sets of people and they're both giving me grief!!

    I've decided to fire the noobs and have already written the letters of doom and verbally given one of them their notice in person. The pro's I'm going to give one more chance, but if they play up I shall ditch them too. I was running the show with just one other colleague, quite happily, for several months before I took on these other people - the noobs purely out of philanthropic kindness and the pro's in the mistaken belief that they'd help the place run more smoothly.

    If I end up losing them all, things might actually improve. Perhaps when I point that out to the pro's, they might realise that i'm not dealing with them for my own damn benefit. In the end I can't afford to keep risking letting down the vulnerable people who rely on our service, just to humour the egos of people who could go elsewhere if that's what they want.

    The double standard is just unacceptable. If I were to "just forget" or "have too many personal problems" to sort out the wages one week, they'd all soon be lining up to tell me I should take care of my responsibilities when others are relying on me. Yet when their laziness literally meant that my wages were cut - since theirs were fixed salaries and what I got to live on was whatever was left of the takings once their wages and the overheads were taken out - well, that was just tough shit for me wasn't it?
    Ils se d�merdent, les mecs: trop bon, trop con..................................MY BLOG!

    "When it all comes down to dust
    I will kill you if I must
    I will help you if I can" - Leonard Cohen

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