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Peter Drucker Effective Executive – What can I contribute?”

“What can I contribute that will significantly affect the performance and the results of the institution I serve?”


Chapter 3 of Peter Drucker’s book The effective Executive is “What Can I contribute?”

Peter had asked a senior executive ” What do you do that justifies your being on the payroll?”

The Senior executive responded by saying “I run accounting” another exec says ” or “I manage 800 people”  

This type of answer is counter productive to what your role to the company is. The correct approach to answer this question is to talk about your results not your effort.

What the senior exec should’ve said was “My job is to provide info to the President to make the best decision.”

It is very important that you should be focusing on contribution.  It is a power method to also developing people.  Many workers will adjust to the level of what is demanded by them.  The standards can will eventually be raised to the contributions that is be requested by the executives.

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Another method is to ask your subordinates ” What contribution from me do you require to make your contribution to the organization better?”   Many times executives can cause roadblocks that was not made aware of.  What’s great about this process is that optimizing contributions works both ways.  Peter says that it’s important that this is identified to both superiors and subordinates.

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Here is the 4 effective ways to manage relationships with your team members;

  1. Communications: What are contributions for which the company and I, superior should hold you accountable? What should be expect from you?
  2. Teamwork: Who has to use my output for it to be effective?  Ex. Hospital staff requires all the nurse, doctors, xray, and other specialists to work as a team.  Each of their output effects the results from other team members
  3. Self-development:  Ask yourself “What knowledge and skill do I need?”
  4. Develop others: People grow according to their demands they make on themselves
See also  The Summary of The Effective Executive by Peter Drucker

Another topic that Peter Drucker talks about throughout the book is the topic of meetings.   Clearly meetings is a sore spot for him and totally understand.  Meetings are always abundant in the corporate world.  I for one had my shares of meeting and continue to this day.

Here is the 4 effective ways to manage relationships with your team members; Click To Tweet

Peter says that these questions should be asked to have a more effective meeting:

  1. Be mindful that meetings can take a lot of people’s time
  2. “Why are we having this meeting?”
    Make decision, Inform, What we should be doing?

I like to reiterate the importance of understanding what your contributions to the job are.   Don’t talk about the tasks that you do.  The tasks are suppose to create some type of results.  That is what is more important.  Understanding this concept can be real big eye opener.

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To focus on contribution is to focus on effectiveness

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