Gary Holt Blog

Oversight: The Real Value of Management

Posted by Andrea Hewett on Fri, Aug, 01, 2014 @ 16:08 PM

Once projects or work is assigned or delegated, it is the responsibility of that position’s manager to make sure the tasks within the project are completed. The best way is the proactive approach. Proactive means that the oversight manager has access to task lists and checks dates far enough in advance of the due date to be sure tasks are completed and work gets done.

Many times the attitude is to expect things will get done because the work has been planned out and the employee knows what needs to be done. Of course this doesn’t always work because people forget. Another important thing to remember is that employees often get blindsided by unexpected tasks or problems and can often get behind on other important tasks.

Management’s job is to evaluate time and tasks based on the results expected. Usually key results are prioritized by the impact on the customer. Another priority could be the effect on profit or the business itself. In order to coach people effectively, on site observation of the process or tasks being done can give clues on how to make the right decisions. Are unexpected issues or requests made of the employee? What interruptions are occurring? Does manpower need to be distributed for better effect? Is the necessary information readily available in easy-to-use, easy-to-understand form? Are supplier materials or sub-contractors available when they are needed? Are there a sufficient number of quality control points in the workflow? Are levels of rework and waste at an absolute minimum? All of the above are a part of the oversight management system.


Oversight also includes having a capacity system. A capacity system is defined as how much an employee or team can produce in a given time frame. Knowledge of capacity helps management understand how long a task or project will take or how many workers are required. If management knows now many tasks a worker can complete, then they can predict more accurate completion times and wages required. Capacity planning keeps management from flying by the seat of their pants.

Remember the phrase “The Devil is in the details”? Many problems arise because there wasn’t enough oversight. Sometimes a manager will be called a micro-manager, but in many cases, that’s fine. The definition of management is getting work done through others. Some tools a manager can use include calendar checklists, project management software, employee mandatory meetings and so forth. In other words, most organizations don’t have a management oversight system and that is a problem. The oversight management system creates trust and the oversight adds verification. This system can eliminate problems immediately, which is why managers add value.

Topics: time management, planning, Efficiency, improve efficiency, workflows, Efficiency Improvements, Gary Holt, task list,, tasks