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Don’t be like people in a dragon costume

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Are dragons just a mythical creature or do they still exist in the depths of the ocean or some unexplored jungle? One can’t prove a negative, so perhaps.

For our purposes today however, we’re going to examine dragon costumes, and why they make a good illustration of what not to do in business.

But Eric, what’s wrong with people in a dragon costume, and why shouldn’t I be like them?

Dragons are ostensibly large animals so dragon costumes are usually big ordeals that require multiple people inside. For the creature to move, they all need to be in complete lockstep. By necessity, they must do everything as a group or the whole thing will collapse.

You want your team to be unified in purpose, but if everything is a group effort then something’s wrong. A well-organized business will have various divisions such as management, human resources, finance, marketing, etc.

Too much micromanagement or decision-by-committee defeats the purpose. If an executive needs to micromanage their juniors, one of two things may be the problem:

  1. The junior is incompetent, lazy, or unethical. If the issue is a lack of competence, then the staff member may be made productive by some training. If the problem is a lack of ethics, then you don’t need that person on your team.
  2. If the junior is competent and is doing a good job, then an executive should allow them to get the job done with minimal interference. This frees up the executive’s time to get more important work done and ultimately results in a more productive operation.

If you want to have a successful team, surround yourself with good people and empower them to do their jobs!

Eric Eisenhammer is a political strategist and technology entrepreneur in northern California.

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