Modern Machine Shop

AUG 2018

Modern Machine Shop is focused on all aspects of metalworking technology - Providing the new product technologies; process solutions; supplier listings; business management; networking; and event information that companies need to be competitive.

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THE VIEW FROM MY SHOP MMS AUGUST 2018 44 mmsonline.com A Metalworking Leader's Perspective Leaders, Not Just Managers If my shop needs my 24-hour involvement to run effectively, then I have failed as a leader. ANEESA MUTHANA | CO-OWNER AND PRESIDENT | PIONEER SERVICES Confident delegation of decision-making and Swiss CNC machining operations allows me to venture out to network, learn and promote our industry. If I succeed at finding qualified and motivated leaders from the limited (but growing) pool of skilled labor, I can spend more time on my business and less time working in it. Nearly all of us have spent countless hours digging into "effective leadership," trying to model the attributes as best we can. Technical compe- tence and a willingness to control others simply are not enough. Someone might know everything there is to know about machining parts, but it does not mean that person knows a thing about how to resolve conflict, show empathy or motivate others. Twenty-five years as president and owner of Pioneer Service have taught me to set the bar high and to hold myself accountable for trying to meet effective leadership standards. Below are the stan- dards and attributes I value most, but I realize that few people excel at all of them. Leaders are committed to learning and adaptation. Humble leaders embrace continuous improve- ment and see it as a part of a symbiotic relation- ship with me. They identify gaps in technical expertise and people skills, and jump at training opportunities for themselves, their team and even their peers. Leaders acknowledge my willingness to invest in them, and they reciprocate by excit- edly deploying those new skills to their position. It is no coincidence a sign in my shop reads, "The most dangerous words are 'we've always done it this way.'" Leaders hold others accountable, but they also accept responsibility for failures and share credit for successes. Nothing evolves without risk. Egotistical leaders tend to be either mouselike or reckless with risk. Leaders with quiet, humble confidence know when to play it safe and when to push the envelope. They revisit their decision as necessary to accommodate changing agendas At Pioneer Services, leaders are committed to learning and adaptation. and keep their team updated and motivated, which allows these leaders to focus on high- payoff activities. Leaders are not perfect. I have yet to encounter a form of learning that does not require a mistake. If I want my leaders to be committed to learning, then I must accept bad days. Things will break. Key performance indicators (KPIs) will some- times dip. When leaders lose, they do not lose the lesson. They want to be a part of a winning team and find ways to make it happen. Leaders are willing and able to make timely deci- sions, even and especially when I am unavailable. Do not get me wrong: If there is a legitimate crisis, I want to be involved. However, a confident leader will be better equipped to handle more situations

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