Way too many managers are still striving for the status of a manager intending to make a specific career. Considering the real meaning and origin of these two words >manger / career< this rings kind of absurd and barely presentable.

Manager is deviated from >>manus<< (Latin), the hand, and from >>maneggiare<< (Italian), to handle. That is the origin of the word manege as well. The term manager was used as a synonym for ringmasters first in England in the year 1870.

Career accrues from the French language and means >>the fastest pace of a horse<<. It does not amaze, that in this connection much dust is raised, much noise is made and many things are stamped down.

In contrast know-how-bearers act as businessman of life, their only certitude being their capability, their cognition, their abilities and skills, their social competence and their social charisma. They do not need positions and rates as an appearance of certitude, nor do they need status symbols as an instrument of manipulation. They know their acquirements and the way to increase it by life lasting years of learning and changing. They take their lives in their hands and not their files. Keeping them means offering an opportunity to develop individually, offering job rotation and increasing knowledge. Travelling forms not only in private life but in the business as well. Career means development.

The employees´ qualification and motivation, the handsomeness of a label, the importance of a network: no accountancy can ever draw up these assets of a company in the balance sheet. But the merit of a company is more and more represented by values that cannot be quantified, scaled or anyhow conceptualized in numbers. The administration, the manager has to care for these immaterial factors of success in a special way. It is not a baseless speaking of the “age of intangibles” – the age of immaterial values. Banks are still evaluating machines and estates. Banks disregard the value of employees and know how bearers.

Successful managers are not captive by fear. They admit enough free space the employees need to develop their own ideas and enforce these ideas against opposition. This may be a risk, but it is a profitable risk. A fine executive empowers his employees to outmatch themselves. But whoever dispreads fear instead of authority disables his employees.

It is a challenge to follow ones own steps – one will never leave own steps behind walking in the steps of others!

Christian H. Menczik

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