Ask Shaun: How Does a Supervisor Handle a “Mystery Man?”

by Shaun Kieran

Shaun – I run crews on multiple sites. I’ve got one guy who works for me who’s turned into a mystery man.  At first he was a real go-getter who definitely wanted to show me something, and he seemed totally OK with the extra stuff I gave him to do that I was sure he […]

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Highly Intelligent People Can Also Struggle and Need Help

by Shaun Kieran

This is a followup to the responses on a previous “page.” The more I do this work – consulting with parents, supervisors, managers, and caregivers – the more clear it is that generating some sort of action, doing something differently, always trumps insight for actual results.  I’m a left-brained guy myself, and I love insight and […]

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Dear Ray: A note to a new mental health practioner

by Shaun Kieran

Dear Ray: I remember our last chat in the lobby outside the auditorium waiting for the main speaker to close out the conference. You seemed a little wistful compared to our previous encounters, and I wondered whether being up to your Adams apple in clients now is more of a cold shower than you’d anticipated. […]

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Supervisors: Know what your employees do

by Shaun Kieran

As a supervisor, you should know what everyone who reports to you does…obviously. Sure, the organizational chart is worth a look – after all, somebody took the trouble to make it – but it’s crucial to understand what the people who report to you are doing every day to contribute to the work product for […]

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Want to Be a Successful Supervisor? Avoid these 11 Pitfalls.

by Shaun Kieran

Obviously, it’s always best to be positive about being a manager, but sometimes it’s good to keep in mind what not to do. You don’t have to be a natural authoritarian personality to be a good supervisor, but you do have to keep your concentration.  You don’t have to be a schmoozer, but your employees are […]

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Tommy’s Sticky Situation

by Shaun Kieran

Sure, Tommy knew the situation was probably going to be “a little sticky,” but until now he’d always been confident,  approaching cocky, and was pretty sure he could handle almost anything.  “Wrong,” said Tommy while shaking his head. Tommy was a foreman for one of the larger construction companies in the city, and proud that […]

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The Courage to Supervise

by Shaun Kieran

“Courage” may seem a bit dramatic, but it gets at a truth.  Supervisors do more than simply manage workflow or carry out orders from on high.  Supervisors are the daily human face of the organization and, because of the way people are wired, virtually take up residence in a portion of an employee’s brain.  It […]

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A Different World

by Shaun Kieran

When I read business books, I often get the feeling that the work world I see isn‘t quite what those folks are thinking of when they write about what goes on in the workplace. The problems they focus on always somehow seem to boil down to different examples of essentially the same problems – poor […]

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The Crucial Management Task

by Shaun Kieran

You’ve probably noticed that managers and supervisors – at virtually any workplace – are pretty good at remaining calm, conciliatory, and tend to “make nice” when they’re dealing with an angry customer, a client, or a problem with an employee. That’s because it’s basic and central to the job, it’s probably even written into the […]

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Managing is not for sissies

by Shaun Kieran

Not everyone takes to managing. I’ve seen highly competent people, in charge of big projects involving huge dollar amounts, totally fall apart when called upon to deal with a “people” problem in the workplace. Too often, they “handle” it by pretending they don’t see it, just letting it play out, and then – when the […]

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