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Find your Voice

The Voice (Vision, Organisation, Involvement, Communication and Enquiring) model has been developed to encapsulate the essence of good management

Issue date: 17 June 2004
Source: People Management magazine
Page: 45

Format: DVD or double video and users’ manual

Publisher: Angel Productions

Price: £795


In developing their training package on management basics, Angel Productions asked people for their stories about the best or worst boss they had ever had. From the responses, they extracted these points: working for a good boss can have profound and lasting effects, having a bad boss can undermine people long after the experience; many “good bosses” took risks by trusting inexperienced people; “vision” and “insight” are among the attributes which shine out from many “good boss” stories; many “bad” bosses were bullies.

From this, they have created the Voice (Vision, Organisation, Involvement, Communication and Enquiring) model to encapsulate the essence of good management.

The resource introduces us to several typical workplace characters. First, we meet Martin, who is experiencing a classic dilemma: he needs to delegate but does not trust his staff. He bemoans the lack of support he gets from Judi, who he describes as “a bit dizzy”. He has pigeonholed the dispatch clerk, Nawal, as incapable of making decisions, and Ben, driving the forklift truck to pay off his student debts, isn’t worthy of attention because he’s bound to move on before long.

Martin’s lack of management skills brings him to the notice of the head of sales Sam, who tears a strip off him for slip-ups that led to the loss of a client. Fortunately, there are wise words from a more senior manager. Under his influence, Martin and Sam develop their skills and find their Voice. Sam manages to change her way of dealing with an underperforming Ben (who moves into sales after seeing he could have a future in the company). Martin responds subtly to inappropriate behaviour from Dave, Ben’s replacement on the forklift truck, and also helps him overcome his computer phobia.

I warmed to the characters and their shortcomings. I liked the recognition that good intentions sometimes get translated into damaging strategies. Sam didn’t set out to be a bully: her anger stemmed from frustration. If managers can distinguish between needs and strategies for meeting those needs and avoid writing people off, they stand to benefit from increased goodwill.

Jo McHale

Hamelin Occupational Psychology