Tag Archives: authoritarian

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hiring practice

Hiring Practice Is Shaped By Culture

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“We can’t find people.” It is a statement I often hear. Closely followed by, “Nobody wants to work today.” Is this about your hiring practice, culture, or the workforce generations?

Likely the truth is, it is pieces of all three. Working on one of these, will make a difference for the other two. Culture.

By now you’ve probably thought about pay. Not so fast, we’ll get there.

Uplifted Veil

Culture is about mindset. A corporate set of values and beliefs that resonates throughout the organization.

Culture isn’t entirely about what is published. It isn’t entirely about the values statements, the mission statement, or the slogan that appears on a plastic disposable pen at the job fair.

Certainly, all those things have relevance and in-part create the experience for onlookers, but you won’t hide the truth for long.

The winner of the Boston Marathon didn’t just lose thirteen pounds on the latest diet shake or meal plan. They haven’t made statements that they are training yet meanwhile they are secretively are doing something different.

The organization may have the best branding video on the planet. When you lift the veil, what do you see?

Clever marketing creates attraction. As some would suggest, it works. Yet what is inside the box or under the cover will ultimately make the difference.

Hiring Practice

It is one of the hardest things to learn about organizational culture. Culture is not just about what you say or the powerful showcase. It is also about what you do and the associated outputs and results.

Human resources and talent management professionals can help a lot, and they often do. However, if the departmental supervisor believes that leading is about how you demonstrate authority, the uplifted veil is something different.

Yes, there are dirty jobs, mindless jobs, and jobs that are dead ends. Yes, there are perfect fits, and mismatches.

Everyone wants to know what is really under the veil.

When what is underneath is unattractive, only pay will make a difference.


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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c suite authoritarian

How to Navigate the C Suite Authoritarian

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We know that we should do it his or her way. We know enough not to speak unless we are asked. The C suite authoritarian is out there. Is there one in your organization?

C suite Authoritarian

They are out there, thriving on the throne. They probably are not guiding the best organizations but they may be guiding one that is reasonably successful.

The C suite authoritarian thrives on a mismanaged and misguided means of power. They typically live by the, “my way or the highway” approach. They are the authority, sometimes in their mind, the only authority. You should listen, or else.

What is missing with the C suite authoritarian, nearly everything except for the flexing of muscle and the motivation caused by fear.

Motivation through fear is almost never a good thing. Motivation through inspiration is the standard to set. The authoritarian lacks this though, leaving the employees feeling forced to participate.

Navigating the Rough Stuff

Navigating the C suite authoritarian can be tricky, but here are a few universal guidelines that may help.

  • Expecting Change. If you are expecting to change the authoritarian, you may face much disappointment. Remember this person typically only see’s things his or her way. They know it to be the best way (in their mind) and you’re not going to change that. Stubborn is a word sometimes used. Don’t expect them to change.
  • Understand Metrics. Most authoritarians are pushing towards some specific metrics. For them, the value of the person typically takes a backseat to the value of the metric. They, by nature, are not really a people person. Results are what matters and the employees are merely a vehicle to get results. Consider focusing as much as possible on metrics.
  • Gain Trust. Probably no one feels lonelier than the authoritarian does. They like it that way, since everyone knows [sarcasm] it is lonely at the top. The authoritarian typically doesn’t trust, that is part of why they command through demands. They also may be a bit paranoid but will deny both. Show them you’ll take the hits and keep on ticking, you’re here for them.

There are so many factors to consider and for the employee who doesn’t know which way the wind will blow today, it is terribly disappointing.

Authoritarians Thrive

Generally speaking the authoritarians thrive in areas where or when unemployment is in their favor.

They often appear in the mom and pop business, or are often present in the largest gig (or only gig) in town. If unemployment is high, there are fewer choices so people put up with it. Still, trust is typically very low in these organizations and turnover and absenteeism are high.

Not surprising, the C suite authoritarian is often the first to complain about a lack of available workforce. Sometimes it is true, sometimes it is the organizations reputation that limits interest.

Your Choice

Long term you typically have two choices. You can leave, or you can lower your expectations and navigate the system. If you navigate carefully and get closer to the top, you may be the shining example, the light in the tunnel, or the hope that the rest of the team needs.

Every great future story of success probably has a chapter about hardship. I have always liked the story where the underdog wins.


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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