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lotuspuppy
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10 Mar 2010, 11:24 am

Has anyone here ever managed employees? How many? Since Asperger's presents unique communication problems, what strategies did you use to delegate tasks? Was it rewarding, or did you hate every minute of it?

I am considering starting a business of my own one day. Most of the work I can only do myself, but I may need employees down the road to help me with administration. What do you guys think about employees?



memesplice
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10 Mar 2010, 12:50 pm

Yes. Hated it. Never employ anyone again. Should take responsibility for their own actions and lives and not keep asking what to do all the time. Are generally not interested in tasks either. Not recommended from me, at least.



aspi-rant
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10 Mar 2010, 12:51 pm

been there. done that. never again... i hope. ;-)



Laz
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10 Mar 2010, 1:46 pm

AS a shift Manager I had 5-7 support workeres on my team. Thats fine I can deal with that because its hands on and ustilises my skills and trainning. I don't mind being at that level of management or supervising i'm simply doing what im best at and I have sufficient trainning and experiance and at the end of the day its what I trainned to be as a nurse to begin with.

As a team manager I had 14 spread over 4 differnt geological locations one of my which was my office so communication was long distance. This is my current job and it's actually lead me to suffer from burn out due to the level of multi-tasking which you would find difficult to believe. But the stresses of managing an office were more than managing the challenging behaviour of people with serious mental health/personality disorders 8O

I can cope with me + a team being assualted up to 90 times a day, being involved in restraint dealing with injured colleagues and someone going off loose into the public have a mental health crisis fine. But give me a desk to keep tidy while managing a complex job and seems to be my worse nightmare. But I'm solving that problem by going back to what I do best. Took me a year to figure out that management is not for me it brings out all the deficits of my AS.

I really REALLY hate management and offices and desks.....and sodding paper and HP Printers that run out of ink in 50 seconds and wireless internet connections to remote servers 150+ miles away. It's like being in some kind of gulag. Drinking tea like no tomorrow, answering phones none stop, god I hated answering the phone to begin with but on an hourly basis. Plus you have to kinda snoop on your own workers to make sure their doing the job you pay them for. And there is so much BS'ing involved.

If your meaning to be self employed and hiring people I guess the way to go is the traditional tried and tested feudal system method of nepotism. i.e. people you can trust, not people who have a good CV/resume

Quote:
Should take responsibility for their own actions and lives and not keep asking what to do all the time. Are generally not interested in tasks either. Not recommended from me, at least.


Tell me about it, the worst is when there old enough to be your mum or dad and you hold others up to your level of ethics and standards and find others to fall far short of them. I've never tallked to a manager the way some of these idiots do on the other hand I have some fantastic employee's who I have tremendous respect for because they do their job take the initiative and are trustworthy and in the role for the right reasons. Other people I wonder why they bother getting up in the morning if doing the job is such a chore they can always stack shelfs in tesco's



Willard
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10 Mar 2010, 3:19 pm

I've managed small groups several times. Each one presented different and unique challenges, but I have a low tolerance for slackers who strive to use up as many paid hours as possible doing nothing. Those who did their jobs I had no issues with, even if they needed to create their own system that wasn't quite the method I'd trained them in - as long as they were productive, I gave them plenty of rope. Hated firing people, but some just seem to impudently ask for it.

But middle management sucks any way you look at it, because there's always someone above you who can and will countermand any decision you make and who is always looking for a scapegoat to call attention away from their own shortcomings. Then there's the neurotypical proclivity for sniping and Machiavellian manipulation, which leave you constantly 'covering your ass' and 'watching your back'.

What I hated most was being given RESPONSIBILITY WITHOUT AUTHORITY - which is to say being put in charge of people whose productivity (or lack of) reflected on my own performance, but without the authority to eliminate or replace them. When they know you can't fire them, they just goof off and sneer at you. You're no more than a substitute teacher. :roll:

The best management position I ever had was one where the couple of employees there when I started eventually left and I ended up running the whole operation alone. Even though it was a lot more work for me, things went much more smoothly and efficiently without those other people in the way. :P



MommyJones
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10 Mar 2010, 3:22 pm

I hated it. I don't mind delegation to those who have a strong work ethic, so the "managing" part was fine for me. Getting into personell issues? discipline? disputes between employees? not trusting someone to do the work and subsequently being responsible for them? having to document "everything" in order to fire someone who should have been fired a long time ago but you can't...the list goes on.

Not for me either! I don't mind the desk, but leave me alone and let me do MY work.



MommyJones
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10 Mar 2010, 3:30 pm

Willard wrote:
I've managed small groups several times. Each one presented different and unique challenges, but I have a low tolerance for slackers who strive to use up as many paid hours as possible doing nothing. Those who did their jobs I had no issues with, even if they needed to create their own system that wasn't quite the method I'd trained them in - as long as they were productive, I gave them plenty of rope. Hated firing people, but some just seem to impudently ask for it.

But middle management sucks any way you look at it, because there's always someone above you who can and will countermand any decision you make and who is always looking for a scapegoat to call attention away from their own shortcomings. Then there's the neurotypical proclivity for sniping and Machiavellian manipulation, which leave you constantly 'covering your ass' and 'watching your back'.

What I hated most was being given RESPONSIBILITY WITHOUT AUTHORITY - which is to say being put in charge of people whose productivity (or lack of) reflected on my own performance, but without the authority to eliminate or replace them. When they know you can't fire them, they just goof off and sneer at you. You're no more than a substitute teacher. :roll:

The best management position I ever had was one where the couple of employees there when I started eventually left and I ended up running the whole operation alone. Even though it was a lot more work for me, things went much more smoothly and efficiently without those other people in the way. :P


I think I could have written this. My last job was the responsibility without authority thing. I was used...bottom line...The job before was the middle management thing...I don't do well in the shark tank. THAT is everywhere you go!



memesplice
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10 Mar 2010, 4:06 pm

I like the idea of loosely networking with others ,

when there are identifiable mutual interest and identifiable areas of difference

and each is responsible for own outcome in clearly defined areas of responsibility.


Egalitarianism when practical?



NorthernLights
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10 Mar 2010, 9:03 pm

Yes, I've managed up to about 50 people in a professional health care environment.

To some extent I could (at least initially with new people) rely on my title and profession (MD) to get deference from the people I was responsible for.

I did my best to cultivate collaborative, egalitarian relationships with my folks--know and respect one another's role, etc.

When that didn't work, well, then I just had to "put the hammer down" and do or say whatever was needed. At first it was very very very stressful, but after a while I said "Screw it, it's their problem, not mine," and just gave myself "permission" to do whatever had to be done and leave it at that...which is what NT's do, so no big deal in the long run.

I am what qualifies as a high functioning/high compensating Aspy, but that is due to (a) carefully observing/studying NTs, and (b) being blessed with a wonderful NT spouse for 25+ years.

Last but not least....I know that playing the helpless victim card is often tempting for us as Aspies (and frankly, sometimes quite legitimate), but I have found that giving in to this option doesn't help anything in the long run as far as adjusting, cultivating strategies for living/working the world that we do, etc.

Just some thoughts for those who can't find a way out of it! I have found over the years that maybe 1 person in 10 just can't deal with me/my way of leading. The rest are fine with it, though maybe 2 or 3 out of that ten have some adjusting to do. Overall, it's doable.



blastoff
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10 Mar 2010, 10:23 pm

I was a crew leader for the Census ten years ago.

It was awful. I was really unsuited for the job. My poor executive function skills meant that it was a constant battle to keep organized and keep track of who was doing what where (and when), and my social ineptitude and inability to compromise guaranteed that nobody wanted to work for me. If people were good self-starters and would just do the work like they were supposed to, I was fine. They'd do their thing, they'd report to me, I'd give them the next assignment. But if anything went wrong, or if there was any personal tension, I was doomed.

Never again.



Brennan
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10 Mar 2010, 11:57 pm

I don't do well managing other people. I find having to keep tracking of what others are doing as well as my own work really confusing. I also hate people interrupting me, which happens enough in my current job, but would happen more if I had a team to manage.
I am much happier just being left to my own stuff.



memesplice
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11 Mar 2010, 1:54 am

NL - It is different in construction trades. Very few are interested in the job itself for itself. Most don't like it , especially as they get older. They do not like be told what to do, doing something they resent doing , and are only doing to pay bills. They play stupid obvious games with you, try to steal, turn up late and you get the blame from the customer for their stupidity. You almost earn the same as if you didn't have them and work on your own at your own pace. The differential in profit is sadly not worth the reward.They blame you for the consequences of their actions when you sack them . It is like having a tribe of overgrown permanently resentful teenagers with no respite.

Getting other stuff done is about finding the most efficient route. For example : if you want to get
social infrastructure put in for Aspies or other exploited/ under-represented social group, no need to spend years working/managing campaign. Simply identify route of power communication, locate relevant MP's/Minister subject them to blast of high frequency Aspispeak and legislation gets put in place. Then go back to painting houses, they won't pay you for this ,so there is no point in wasting any more time.

Pattern System Analysis with regard to infrastructure is fun but currently I am not interested.I only have this interest because a friend of mine does and I like that friend. I am currently building a cognitive - memetics based model of consciousness. This is my hobby but I am not sharing it with anyone because I would want paying for it.



GreatCeleryStalk
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11 Mar 2010, 11:57 am

Yes, I've managed employees. I don't mind it. It can sometimes be frustrating when they don't do their jobs and you can't work with them to correct the problem.



AardvarkGoodSwimmer
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11 Mar 2010, 7:54 pm

NorthernLights wrote:
. . . I did my best to cultivate collaborative, egalitarian relationships with my folks--know and respect one another's role, etc.
.
.
.
I have found over the years that maybe 1 person in 10 just can't deal with me/my way of leading. The rest are fine with it, though maybe 2 or 3 out of that ten have some adjusting to do. Overall, it's doable.


9 out of 10, or even 7 out of 10 sounds above average to me! If you look at all the books on delegation and management, all kinds of people, across a wide range of neuro- types and styles, have trouble with management. It's just something that is inherently non-perfect.

NorthernLights, I would ask you this. Some people just want to be told what to do. Other people want to know the reasons and rationales (more of the egalitarian style). Maybe if you gave a medium amount of information to a new employee and then trusted your gut instincts regarding more or less for next time? (This is something I've been experimenting with. Like I learned in poker, one bet may not tell you anything, but if a player consistent bets pre-flop, flop, and turn, that is telling you something!)

(I put a lot of work into poker and broke even. Don't recommend it, other than the social skills.)

And welcome to our group! I think it's great that you're a doctor. And it sounds like you have a wonderful marriage.



Athenacapella
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11 Mar 2010, 8:02 pm

My career seems to be headed this way, and I'm wondering if it's a good thing. I spend a lot of time thinking about it.

Right now I'm in charge of a couple of projects and responsible for meeting tight deadlines, but I do NOT have authority over any of the people who have to contribute to these projects. It is not fun! If I knew I could get in trouble for these people not turning in their pieces in time, then I might be able to crack down, but as it is I have to beg their managers for them to crack down on their reports to get their pieces to me.

That said, I seem to do a pretty decent job in keeping track of all the various pieces.

I wonder if I would be too lenient as a boss, though. I have a hard time believing that people lie, so I tend to believe anything that I hear.