What can Google’s “Project Oxygen” tell us about sales management?

NY Times reports Google Management Study

 In the NY Times on Sunday* there was a very interesting story about a Google study (Project Oxygen). The study’s focus was on what made Google managers successful. Emerging from the study were eight good behaviors.  

What struck us when reading the article was that first Google not only identified the eight good behaviors but prioritized them. And, second, it even surprised Google top management that technical skills came in last. Here are Google’s eight good behaviors:    

1. Be a good coach 

2. Empower your team – don’t micromanage 

3. Express interest in team member’s success and personal well-being 

4. Don’t be a sissy: Be productive and results-oriented 

5. Be a good communicator and listen to your team 

6. Help your employees with career development 

7. Have a clear vision and strategy for the team 

8. Have key technical skills so you can help advise the team 

 … and three pitfalls 

1. Have trouble making a transition to the team 

2. Lack a consistent approach to performance management and career development 

3. Spend too little time managing and communicating. 

Take a read – it’s always interesting to get a “peak” into Google … and the findings certainly are applicable to sales management! What do you think the implications for sales management in ranking technical skills eigth rather than higher up on the list? 

* Google’s Quest to Build a Better Boss  by Adam Bryant – March 12, 2011

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