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女老板怎么当(英汉双语)

(2009-10-23 09:41:58)
标签:

女老板

管理

职场

财经

分类: 【C】【学习频道】
作者:英国《金融时报》专栏作家 露西•凯拉韦

前一阵子,英国《金融时报》刊登了世界排名前50位的女首席执行官名单。我向来对此类名单兴趣浓厚,于是便在用早餐时仔细研究了一番。首先,我欣赏了雅芳首席执行官(CEO)佩戴的双排珍珠项链,莎莉公司(Sara Lee) CEO的珍珠白牙齿,以及日本临时雇员公司(Tempstaff)创始人筱原良子(Yoshiko Shinohara)完美得有些诡异的肌肤——她看上去比我年轻,但其实已经74岁了。

接着我阅读了她们的成功秘诀。排名第一的女性——百事公司(PepsiCo)的英德拉•努伊(Indra Nooyi)表示,你必须努力工作并享受乐趣。卡夫(Kraft)的艾琳•罗森菲尔德(Irene Rosenfeld)表示,你必须跟着自己的热情走。其他人则谈到了拥有一位导师、做自己、工作与生活平衡、团队协作和谦逊的重要性。

读着这一切,我感觉自己正一点点陷入一张低矮的懒人沙发,而且再也无法站起身来。这倒不是因为其中有什么特别让人反对的观点,而是因为这些女性都取得了非凡成就,却在不过大脑地重复时下每一位现代CEO——无论男女——都必须持有的关爱他人、与人分享的观点。

不和谐的音符只有一处,来自一家中国空调制造商的掌门人董明珠,她在世界女商人中影响力排名第九。“我从来没有失过手,”她表示。“我从不认错,我永远都是对的。”

读到这里我笑了出来。这话那么爽快、那么惊人、那么出格,以至于我以为它是个玩笑。在管理界语出此言,就好比承认自己喜好乱伦,或者对恋童癖者深怀敬意。

但董姐——人们有时这样称呼她——做出了成绩。过去3年,格力电器(Gree Electric Appliances)实现了529.5%的股东回报。让我们拿——比如说——雅芳做个比较。首席执行官钟彬娴(Andrea Jung)不无自豪地说过,她最大的灵感源泉是公司600万人的销售团队。哎,为了听取600万个想法,她似乎已顾不上财务状况。同样是过去3年,她所创造的回报率是惨淡的负10.5%。

或许有人会说,“董姐从不犯错”这种管理流派只能在中国奏效,那里的人们对专制钟爱有加,管理学理论还在研究如何赚钱,尚未进化到将导师制及360度反馈等假情假意的做法纳入其中的阶段。

但是上周,我去看了一部纪录片《九月刊》(The September Issue),拍的是美国版《Vogue》杂志社的工作生活,我可以证实,在最先进、竞争最激烈的行业——时尚业,“董姐从不犯错”那一套同样可以发挥出绝妙效果。

该杂志主编安娜•温图尔(Anna Wintour)是董姐在曼哈顿的心灵伴侣。影片中,她的一名下属评价称,为这份杂志工作“就像是归属教会”。 这是否意味着温图尔是最高女祭司?当被问及这点时,她答道:“不,更像是罗马教皇。”

在90分钟的影片里,我们看到的是一个不怎么讨人喜欢、处于深度压抑状态的女人,她从不赞美任何人,也几乎从来不笑,只是不断地出入由专人驾驶的轿车,告诉下属他们的作品是何等丑陋或乏味。然而就是这个女人,20年来一直稳居她所在行业的最高位置,而大多数CEO——无论男女——干上四五年后就会被迫出局或遭遇惨败。

唉,影片中的温图尔没有回顾自己作为独裁者的成功经历——这种事情毕竟落俗。因此,我将试着代其为之,解释一下在西方,暴君是如何做到呼风唤雨的。

步骤一:找一个天才担任二把手,当你做事出格时,这位天才必须敢于面露不满。温图尔的最大资产就是格蕾丝•柯丁顿(Grace Coddington),这位红发创意总监也已稳居其位20年之久。

步骤二:做决定。大多数CEO四处咨询、犹豫不决、疑神疑鬼、怕得罪人、朝令夕改。温图尔则果断地下决定。只要她下了决定,就没有回旋的余地。

步骤三:赢得尊敬。这部影片让人意识到,别人的尊敬原来那么重要,而当“老好人”是无法赢得尊敬的。一名被痛斥了一顿的倒霉下属对着摄影机说:“我去自杀好了。”但当我们又一次见到她时,她还活着,正在为下一次做得更好而加倍努力。作为激励工具,赞美似乎远不及讨好教皇的渴望来得有效。

步骤四:不出错。与董明珠一样,温图尔认为自己从不出错。但温图尔的不同寻常之处在于,她真的几乎从不出错。一部分原因是她很聪明,经验丰富,非常勤奋,对事情的在意程度超过了看似合理的水平。但同时也是因为,她在那么长的时间里一直都无比正确,以至于她现在已经成了正确的定义。如果安娜说时下流行皮草,那么时下就流行皮草。如果安娜说西耶•娜米勒(Sienna Miller)的头发死气沉沉,那么它就是死气沉沉的。

要在空调制造领域练就同样的功力,肯定会更困难一些。对董姐以及其他所有管理全球性复杂企业的CEO而言,判断自己到底是对是错,是件难度极大的事情。与此同时,他们可以选择两种统治方式:要么利用下属的恐惧感——这在中国和时尚界仍然奏效——要么通过无休止地鼓吹热情和导师,同时希望自己犯的错误不会被人发觉。

A four-step guide to being a successful female boss

    On Saturday, the FT published a list of the top 50 women chief executives in the world and, loving such lists, I settled down over breakfast to study it. First, I admired the double string of pearls worn by the CEO of Avon; the pearly white teeth of the Sara Lee chief and the spookily perfect skin of Yoshiko Shinohara, founder of Tempstaff in Japan – who looks younger than I do but turns out to be 74.

Next I read the secrets of their success. The number one woman, PepsiCo's Indra Nooyi, says you must work hard and have fun. Irene Rosenfeld of Kraft says you must follow your passion. The others talk about the importance of having a mentor, of being yourself, of work-life balance, of teamwork and of being humble.

Reading this, I felt I was sinking into a low-slung foam chair from which I couldn't get out. It wasn't that there was anything in particular to disagree with. It was that these women, all of whom have achieved exceptional things, mindlessly repeat the caring, sharing views that every modern CEO – male and female – is now required to have.

There was only one discordant note. This was sounded by Dong Mingzhu, who runs a Chinese manufacturer of air conditioners and is rated the ninth most important businesswoman in the world. “I never miss,” she says. “I never admit mistakes and I am always correct.”

I read this and laughed. It was so bracing, so shocking, so out of line that
I thought it a joke. This is the management equivalent of saying one is into incest or has a lot of respect for paedophiles.

Yet Sister Dong, as she is sometimes known, has achieved results. Gree Electric Appliances has achieved total shareholder returns in the past three years of 529.5 per cent. Compare this with Avon, say, where Andrea Jung boasts that her biggest inspiration is the 6m strong sales force. Alas, it seems that listening to 6m ideas may have distracted her from the bottom line. Her return over the same period is a poor -10.5 per cent.

One might argue that the Sister-Dong- never-wrong school of management is something that only works in China, where the fondness for autocracy is considerable and theory of management is still about making money and hasn't evolved to include such soppy practices as mentoring or 360-degree feedback.

Yet last week I went to see The September Issue, a documentary about life at American Vogue, and can confirm that the Sister-Dong-never-wrong approach can work quite brilliantly in the most highly evolved and most competitive of industries: fashion.

Anna Wintour, the magazine's editor, is Sister Dong's Manhattan soulmate. In the course of the film, one of her staff comments that working for the magazine is “like belonging to a church”. Does that mean Wintour is the high priestess, she is asked. “No,” she replies. “More like the Pope.”

For 90 minutes, we see a not very personable, deeply repressed woman who never praises anyone and hardly ever smiles, getting into or out of chauffeur- driven cars and telling her underlings their work is ugly or boring. Yet for 20 years, this woman has hung on at the top of her business, while most CEOs – male and female – last four or five years before they are spat out or squashed.

Alas, Wintour did nothing as vulgar in the film as to reflect on her own success as a dictator. So I'm going to attempt to do it for her and explain how a tyrant can rule in the west.

Step one. Have a genius as number two who dares to purse their lips disapprovingly when you get out of line. Wintour's greatest asset is Grace Coddington, her flame-haired creative director, who has lasted 20 years too.

Step two. Make decisions. Most CEOs consult, dither, look over their shoulders, fret about upsetting people and change their minds. Wintour simply decides. And when she's decided, that's it.

Step three. Command respect. Watching the film makes one realise what an enormous deal respect is and how it is
not won by being nicey-nicey. One
luckless underling who had been given a frosty bollocking said to the camera: “I am going to kill myself.” But the next time we saw her she was still alive and had redoubled her efforts to do better next time. Praise, it seems, is far less effective as a motivational tool than the desire to please the Pope.

Step four. Be right. Like Dong, Wintour thinks she is never wrong. But in Wintour's case the extraordinary thing is that she almost never is wrong. Partly this is because she is very clever, very experienced, very hard-working, and
minds more than seems reasonable. But it is also because she has been so right for so long that she is now right by
definition. If Anna says fur is in, it's in. If she says Sienna Miller's hair is lacklustre, then it's lacklustre.

Pulling off the same feat with air conditioning must be harder. For Sister Dong, and for all the other CEOs who run complicated, global businesses, it is terribly hard to tell if they are actually wrong or not. And in the meantime they have a choice. Either rule by fear – which still works in China and in fashion – or rule by banging on about passion and mentors and hoping that if you are wrong, no one will notice.

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