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Readiness Recipes

The Disciplined Manager

April 26, 2012 by Dr. Jon Warner in Readiness Recipes

The Disciplined Manager

The Disciplined Manager is not someone who punishes individuals or tries to gain control through lots of rules and high levels of obedience but is instead a positive role model for high standards. He/she acts as a personal role model for others to emulate. A disciplined manager is focused on making “disciples” (the root of the word) of the standards so that these can be followed in consistent ways, creating a sense of both stability and accountability. The disciplined manager must therefore sometimes speak up when it is important to do so.

Ingredients:Readiness Recipes

  • Challenging mediocrity
  • Target focused
  • Alert to shortfalls
  • Straight-talking
  • Fair-minded
  • Consistent

Ingredients should be added, blended well and left to mature over time:

  • Challenging mediocrity is about a manager challenging himself or herself and others on the team to do the best work possible and not to accept lackluster performance, or results.
  •  Target focused is about setting clear objectives creating long term plans with well-described milestones and ensuring that effective measurement systems are in place to track progress.
  • Alert to shortfalls involves setting up as many performance shortfall “early warning systems” as necessary to ensure that individuals can be encouraged or coached before gaps widen.
  • Straight-talking is the ability to be frank and use clear communication rather than technical language, avoiding indirect or abstract communication to ensure that people understand standards or what needs to be done.
  •  Fair-minded is about weighing the information received in an even-handed and balanced way or trying to see the actual strengths and weaknesses of any reasoning that is presented  with as little bias and/or prejudice as possible.
  •  Consistent means being reliable, coherent, congruous and uniform in your general approach to people and standards so that individuals can expect reasonable treatment and balance related to workplace issues.
The Disciplined Manager has all of these ingredients; no substitutions or omissions can be made to the recipe.

“Readiness Recipes” is a new article series exploring 26 different kinds of managers A-Z and the key ingredients that each needs for success.  Stay tuned for more recipes and thanks for reading!

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About Dr. Jon Warner

Dr. Jon Warner is a prolific author, management consultant and executive coach with over 25 years experience. He has an MBA and a PhD in Organizational Psychology. Jon can be reached at

View all posts by Dr. Jon Warner →

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About the Editor and Primary Author

Jon Warner

Jon Warner is an executive coach and management consultant and in the past has been a CEO in three very different companies. Read more

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