The hit US tv show The Office began life in Britain, when Ricky Gervais perfectly paralleled every employees’ worst nightmare in David Brent. The American version of the show went one step further with the introduction of Michael Scott – an insufferable and overbearing manager, the likes of which we have all had to withstand at some point in our careers.
But how much of what we see on screen can be digested and reused in our day-to-day lives? In the business of people management, there is no one leadership style. Instead, you should be adapting and evolving your outlook in relation and reaction to the milieu of the workplace.
We spoke to Amanda Cullen, renowned executive coach and CEO of Coaching with Amanda, who explained the importance of finding your leadership edge. She said to take inspiration from role models: “These could be politicians, celebrities, historical figures, colleagues or people in a social group you belong to – or perhaps even characters from fiction. Notice how they lead – what are the qualities you particularly admire about them? Just as important, think about the characters you don’t admire.
“What is it about their behaviour that you dislike or find unappealing? Remember a time when a person with authority (a teacher, a parent, a boss) inspired or motivated you. How did they go about it?
“Conversely, consider a situation when a similar person really upset or annoyed you. What was it they did that triggered that reaction in you?”
We have collected seven examples of a time when The Office offered more than a cheap laugh, and actually shed some light on how to manage authority. Take a look below, and tell us your thoughts in the comments.
1. Don’t be afraid to show passion at work