Monday, May 23, 2022

It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do (Steve Jobs)

Photo by Himesh Kumar Behera on Unsplash

I've always been slightly perplexed by job descriptions. Often, they don't appear to have much relationship with the actual job. After a while, the realities of the job take over from the Job Description and employees don't look at it ever again.

For instance, I've seen a lengthy official Job Description for my support staff, but they had to hunt for it to show me and it came in multiple parts.

So, to combat that scenario, each year I've had meetings with my support staff to ascertain what they actually do in their job. The 'real' job description extrapolates out from the official one (which exhaustively covers all possible bases) with tasks and specific areas of responsibility.

The 'real' one changes each year as people come and go and is co-constructed with the people in the jobs. It suits individual strengths and weaknesses and isn't a document to keep people accountable. Instead, it's an informational document for the support staff and the teaching staff to know who is doing what and how the job matters.

It's quite powerful when purpose is aligned with tasks.

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