TeamLead Conf: “MBA digital is not a friend”

    The digital world is characterized by rapid career growth, which forces young managers to switch from mastering the fundamental ideas of the same MBA to trainings, lectures and meetings, because they allow to further accelerate the process. However, in this and in another case, an exact answer to the eternal question “what to do” cannot be obtained. The reason is the difficulty of adapting the theory to their personal practice. But this does not mean that there is no way out.

    How did the idea of TeamLead Conf appear , what does the new type of education in digital and serendipity have to do, says Alexander Ziza, one of the organizers of our conference Aletheia Business and a member of the program committee of TeamLead Conf.

    - Tell us in a few words about yourself and your work.

    Alexander Ziza: Aletheia Business is a partnership story of Virna Stern, executive coach and psychologist, company founder, and mine is an organizational consultant. I am in the past an engineer, an electronics developer, a top manager in a foreign company - everything is somehow connected with IT. Virna has a wealth of experience working with people - as a coach, working with more than a hundred participants at the same time, a psychologist, a coach of owners of digital businesses.

    Our collaboration began in 2004, and almost immediately we focused on the IT business, then we began working with Oleg Bunin's conferences — HighLoad ++ and RIT ++. Now we are focusing on accelerating the development of management in digital-organizations, as well as digital transformation, and HighLoad ++ and the world of digital-culture of this conference are its vivid manifestation.

    Our main work is the development of managerial competencies that are needed to the team leaders, top managers and owners of the IT business. We see our task in the study, systematization and technologization of the most advanced management practices in digital.

    - How did the history of the specialized conference TeamLead Conf begin?

    Alexander Ziza: Virna and I had reports and meetings at Oleg Bunin conferences, which attracted more and more timblids who came to hear about management instead of interesting reports on other tracks. A year and a half ago, we offered Oleg Bunin to implement on HighLoad ++ 2017 a separate track for team leaders, and it was a success. Thus was born the idea of ​​an independent conference TeamLead Conf .

    The main idea was to find management practices that could be used more broadly - we saw that this is a very big pain for the entire movement of high loads.

    The world is growing very fast, programmers grow into managers, and those grow into managers over managers, etc. There is no such rapid growth anywhere except in digital.

    The rest of the non-digital world are completely different speed. And here it is important to find something that will give a quick effect to a novice leader, that will quickly bring him up to speed, make a professional, help solve the problems of managing people, without wasting too much time and energy.

    The scale of the industry, this problem at the system level has not yet been solved. Another confirmation of this is the report of SHL , which publishes estimates of trends in personnel development. According to her research in 2016, in Russia there is a serious shortage of managers, especially at the level of line managers in IT - timlidov. This report, by the way, became one of the impulses to implement the idea.

    - TeamLead Conf focused only on timlidov?

    Alexander Ziza: Of course not. We focus on the most talented from the point of view of the development of their managerial qualities of people of all levels. These can be senior developers, PMs, timlides. As a rule, the senior management finds a promising person and offers him to steer the team, literally “throws” him into this task. And it is difficult and scary for him, and he wants to, and he hesitates, and no one listens. Many fail, return coding, burn out emotionally. How to deal with the guys with whom you drank beer yesterday was “you”, and today you need to demand results from them?

    At each event organized by us, we will ask participants questions about their problems and expectations. We have already accumulated a lot of completed questionnaires. From their analysis it is clear what questions novice managers can find answers to.

    Here, for example, he used to coded, and now it is necessary to make these people - former colleagues - fulfill some requirements, comply with the quality level, observe deadlines.

    For managerial positions, a completely different competency stack is required than for development. And TeamLead Conf is a conference that aims to carry out a concentration of knowledge and exchange of opinions on what is needed in order to quickly carry out this development step from a developer to a manager.

    Do you always find new material for reports or re-open old topics?

    Alexander Ziza: To be honest, a certain metamorphosis has occurred in our approach.
    Initially, the idea was to make one-time an independent track, because there were a lot of questions (we had a whole list). After the first independent conference, I was sure that the track was over. In my personal opinion, we have closed 90% of the questions.

    When Oleg Bunin proposed to make the next conference, to be honest, I looked at it with skepticism: what is there to talk about? Topics are all disclosed.

    But nothing like that! Subsequent events showed that the topic is both deeper and wider. We have only slightly touched upon the issue of the Timlid, and there is still a lot of things there. The topic was extremely relevant.

    - TeamLead Conf - the only event of its kind?

    Alexander Ziza: If we consider the work as a whole with control in digital, then such events exist. In the conferences of Oleg Bunin there are several management tracks. Firstly, this is the conference of Whale Rider, which is already more than 10 years old. It is dedicated to best practices in management and entrepreneurship with a focus on more global challenges. To a large extent, there is a conversation about the management of business and business processes, as well as what is called the task of managing the manager.

    Secondly, this is our own track - the conference Aletheia Business, which has already been held twice within the framework of the RHS-festival and is planned for the third time. It is dedicated to the issues of business psychology, leadership and management.

    But TeamLead Conf is a track for beginner managers who have accumulated questions on their own effectiveness or on going to higher managerial positions or to a higher level of responsibility. This is a conference for line managers - first-level managers, directly managing the people who make the product.

    - How do you see the further development of TeamLead Conf?

    Alexander Ziza: Every time I wonder how many different interesting practices still exist, how many topics are not revealed.

    I would say that this is characteristic of the digital world. Prior to his appearance, the life cycle of knowledge was completely different: the practices were accumulated, studied, transferred to universities and management institutes, MBA and executive MBA programs, and training. But in our industry it does not work. None of the educational programs - and I am familiar with many of them - do not understand what a modern digital manager is.

    But the demand for them is very high, and it changes much faster than educational institutions adapt.

    These are our new realities, in accordance with which we need to build qualitatively new educational programs with an individual development track, with a distant focus on the employer who needs all this, on the demand for people. Under these conditions, the conferences — the same TeamLead Conf — turn out to be a vital element that allows you to quickly share experiences. A young manager or a person with a request to become one can come to the conference and in just three days simply decide a burning question for themselves, find a number of personal answers, and not in theory, but in concrete practice.

    - Ie Does the conference have a place in the new education system that is so necessary?

    Alexander Ziza: I am sure of that. This is the very thing that is at the peak of advanced technology.

    It seems to me that the education system (meaning it as a group subject) should also go to such events. Not only look at the reports on high-level trends, digital transformations, etc., but go "in the field" and see what the industry is living now: what questions the experts ask, what answers they get, what practices are there right now. Because most of the practices that are considered at the conference are relevant here and now. At the next conference, some practices "fall off", some become commonplace - everyone does it, this is no longer a competitive advantage. This is not about HYIP in marketing, it is about the most relevant management competencies at the level of line managers. And what they say today is really the peak. This is not yet in the books.

    - Watching this market, do you see any trends that would be worth highlighting? Do you push any ideas to the conference?

    Alexander Ziza: This is a very deep question. People come for some replicated practice. But in fact, the answer they need is never in the field of ready-made practice.

    There is such a concept - the big letter "T". Horizontal trait is practice. And the vertical line is a certain coordinate of the reasons, the coordinate by which I carry out my own development, and this is the position from which I look at things. Practice and development intersect at one point - “what do I need to do here and now.” Both components are necessary, but only an understanding of one’s own position makes it possible to get an answer “what exactly should I do in my situation”.

    Therefore, we are working at the system level with a constant focus on the depth of the reports, on the consecration of the position of the speaker and the reasons why this or that practice worked. Those. when the speaker offers to talk about some interesting replicated practice, we in the framework of coaching by the program committee find in his report reference vectors that served as the basis for the formation of this practice. They enable the participant to understand what can be done in a particular situation. When the listener has an understanding of this meaning, a personal response arises as to what specifically needs to be done.

    There is a certain difficulty here, because basically the conference participants come for the copied things - for the training format: “Make me a timlide, train for a good manager”, “Yes, all this is clear ... what to do?”. Not everyone is ready to hear the answer from another position. Therefore, we try to introduce alternative approaches carefully. So that the listener and the answer to his pressing question received, and saw the deep meaning. Then the report really becomes qualitative, and the conference participant, as they often express themselves: “I did not get a direct answer, but I understood how to do it”.

    I think this is the main direction of our activity in the near future - to draw attention to various positions (and not just ready-made practices) with regard to solving typical problems.

    Does this approach have any methodological scientific basis?

    Alexander Ziza: Of course, and it is developing right before our eyes! For example, relatively recently applied to the digilta culture appeared such a thing as serendipnost. Gartner, for example, points to grayness as one of the important strategies for digital transformation.

    Serendy is similar to the intuition that a trained person manifests when encountering a situation from an area unfamiliar to him. A great example of serendipness is Sherlock Holmes. When we are told how his conclusions were made (the decision was made), it all seems very simple - “here I looked at the shoe, there it went down on the ashes” ... The whole question is in preparation, in the ability to see it all and find solutions.

    The strategy of serendipness in digital transformation is that trained specialists from digital-native culture, with experience and a special, “digital” pattern of problem solving, are immersed in the problems of traditional, non-digital businesses. Thus, at the junction of different cultures, there are solutions that could not even arise within the same culture.

    For the development of serendipness, the main thing is to gain experience, to gain more knowledge, practices and deep thoughts from different areas, from different points of view. It is necessary to analyze not only the daily work or recommended books, you need to get as much of a diverse experience as possible. And the conference in this case is a great way to touch different experiences and different cultures. Subsequently, returning to the working context and meeting a new situation, you suddenly understand how to work with it!

    And how best to master the material of the conference to get your piece of experience?

    Alexander Ziza: The more contacts you have from the conference, the more you will get. It is necessary to physically go to the reports - even to those that may seem not on “their own” topic (and not just on what you like and are relevant). If you do not go in person - see them in the record. Clearly, the reports are different. There are strong, are not very. But these are always useful and very relevant things right now.

    However, listening to the reports is only 10% of the effect of the visit. Second, teach yourself to come up with three questions for each report. They do not even have to ask, but you need to learn how to formulate. This makes it possible to problematize your own tasks and understand the causes, and this is another 30% of the effect.

    The third is to ask questions and chat on the sidelines. The audience in digital is a bit introverted, it doesn’t like to communicate live. If you are, look at those who ask questions and get involved. Use any kind of communication.

    Lively conversation with people solving different problems, perhaps from different areas; spontaneous meetings, when people gather around the booth and begin to discuss something - this is the main advantage of conferences. This, in my opinion, is 60% of the effective use of the conference facilities for yourself.

    In general, we aim to ensure that participants receive the maximum benefit, and we have a good idea of ​​what it should be. We have a lot of internal rules and standards on this subject, which we occasionally tell about in a blog. So “come! It will be interesting useful! "®.

    PS By the way, until January 15, we are open to receive reports . And if you have a small experience of public speaking, take a look at the blog of our coach Roman Poborchego, there are a lot of useful and interesting things that will be useful to you for pumping these skills.

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