Essay Robert Katz: Skills of an Effective Administrator

1572 Words May 12th, 2012 7 Pages
Katz, Robert L. “Skills of an Effective Administrator,” Harvard Business Review: 1955. Retrieved from: McMahon, Timothy, J. Leaderships Classics. pp. 22-35.

Robert Katz identifies the selection and training of good administration as one of American industry’s most pressing problems. Katz tells us that at the root of the problem is the industry’s search for the traits and qualities that will identify the “ideal executive.” In spending so much time looking at personality and one’s value set, companies are in danger of losing sight of what should be their main concern - what a man can accomplish. We believe that this is definitely still a relevant concern today as well. We see business executives with loads of personality and great people
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Human skill is the executive’s ability to work effectively as a group member and to build cooperative effort within the team he/she leads. While having a technical skill means working with “things,” human skill is more concerned with working with people. Katz tells us that real skill in working with people must become a natural, continuous activity because it involves sensitivity not only at times of decision making but also in the day-to-day behavior of the individual. Possessing human skill is not a “sometimes thing.” It must become a part of who the person is.
We agree with this line of thinking wholeheartedly. I think a person must definitely have human skill ingrained in them and it is necessary that they exercise it at every opportunity. Also, Katz gives us a great example of when human skill is lacking in a leader. So often we see leadership get too caught up in production that they forget that they are actually leading real human beings that have feelings just like their own. As a manager it is very important to treat your employees with some respect, especially being sensitive to their physical labor and their abilities. On the whole, we think that human skill is probably the most important skill to possess. As a person, if you are incredibly intelligent yet have no people skills, you run the risk of turning people off and pushing them away because there’s no

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