“They won’t understand; they are three times removed from the Mothership.”
This was a comment from a participant at a leadership workshop. She was pointing out, in her frustration, how often managers and executives float too far away in pursuit of a vision. The need to remain tied into the daily work necessary to keeping machinery oiled, and the mechanics necessary to do really successful project execution, are often overlooked in pursuit of the new and sexy.
“That executive no longer rides the bus.”
That was not a comment about the ‘special’ bus that makes the occasional stop for everyone. It was a reflection of the common references – the daily cultural influences – that are absorbed by reading subway posters, overhearing conversations or reading the dailies. This is a different view of the world around us than those who drive to work (or are driven). It’s not an incorrect view but it can create a divide in reference points.
“Our manager doesn’t know who we are or what we do.”
You can’t know everyone. I know I meet about 200 new folks a month and names escape me. But when your own team feels disconnected, it’s time to talk a walk /fly / call around the team. Host a coffee hour. Host a call. Host office hours where you are available for drop-ins.
We make an effort to connect with our friends, family and communities. Work is another network that needs care and feeding.