Projects A and B are both closing in on deadlines. As the countdown to the deadline approaches, you complete project A, but realize project B will take longer than expected. As reactive management is applied, projects fall behind and there are greater chances of making costly mistakes. Risks are managed with careful planning and orchestrated execution. Second, determine which tasks and responsibilities are critical and delegate or delay any non-critical tasks, creating an action plan to help you prioritize each step. Proactive management is usually much more effective in the long run. Whatever the case is, you should always have some spare time to plan ahead for your business. If you don't plan, you have little choice but to react to the situations and circumstances that arise. It is important to understand time management is an essential weapon against reactive management. As a manager, you wait until problems or crises surface then come up with a solution. You are only halfway through completing project A, but have not started project B. As a manager, you wait until problems or crises surface then come up with a solution. Reactive management is sometimes referred to as the "firefighting" approach to leadership. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! In contrast, proactive management occurs when a system of planning and preparation has been implemented in advance to avoid or manage problems. Proactive maintenance ensures that equipment remains in working order. Mind Tools: From Reactive to Proactive Management, Management Training Specialists: Be Proactive in Your Management Style. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Iowa State University. Rather than having crises and worker demands determine your schedule, you create a plan that allows you to control when and how you lead. The past, no matter how bad, is preferable to the present. Your performance as a manager also suffers when you are bogged down with time-consuming and stressful firefighting, according to management advisory website Mind Tools. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Reactive Capacity Management is important for a swift response in increasing demand, which can’t be offloaded by Demand Management (e.g., increase in number of employees), while Proactive Capacity management is reliant on monitoring and measuring capabilities, trend analysis, and similar methods to predict, fine-tune and restore the balance between all the components in the service belt. Kokemuller has additional professional experience in marketing, retail and small business. Rather than panicking and feeling unequipped, a retail associate is more likely to know how to respond to the upset customer when he is trained in advance. In this blog, the differences between proactive and reactive styles of task management will be reviewed. In other words, the difference between the application of proactive strategy and reactive strategy is mainly one’s preparation and accountability. Finally, create a list of things you will stop doing in order to focus on essential tasks. A remedy is ultimately effected, but not without the risk of the customer storming out and the employee becoming emotionally overwhelmed. We will also identify and outline ways you can move to and leverage a more proactive management style. To effectively leverage proactive management, you must first organize and take control of your time. In contrast, a proactive manager plans ahead and addresses strategies and processes that help protect against potential calamities. The key difference between proactive and reactive strategies is that proactive strategy always reacts to anticipated challenges, whereas reactive strategy involves dealing with unexpected situations. To effectively leverage proactive management, you must first organize and take control of your time. A proactive management style centers on planning, by creating structures and systems that protect against possible crises. The proactive manager also makes positive worker morale a priority and is always looking for better ways to lead and develop the organization. Going Back from Reactive to Proactive Management Make room for time. And if you don’t decide, others [or life] will decide for you.”. An application of reactive management occurs in retail, when an upset customer complains aggressively to an associate who is not equipped or prepared to respond. Proactive managers also identify the best way to do things before a problem pops up with a poor system or process; freedom from firefighting allows for greater time to implement best practices. Furthermore, this style of task management forces you to put long-term planning aside in order to respond to new, pressing issues. You decide. The manager approaches, listens to the problem or complaint, and attempts to offer a remedy. Providing training or coaching only when directly asked by an employee is another example of being reactive. While reactive classroom management involves taking things as they come, proactive classroom management is the fine art of anticipating certain issues and having solid contingency plans in place. Addressing these cultural issues is critical to the success of the current planning process. Reactive management is hectic, stressful and inefficient; but it can sometimes become a routine or a comfort zone for those who embrace it. Have you identified a default approach to handling tasks and objectives in your professional life? Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window), Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window), Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window), A Critical Factor in the Declining Momentum within Small to Mid-Size Companies. You can either spend it moving forward, or you can spend it putting out fires. Among the most compelling benefits of proactive management is a greater sense of control, reports Mind Tools. Meanwhile, the countdown for project C begins. The primary problem with reactive management is that some problems escalate beyond the point of no return before you become aware of them. Typically, managers use a reactive approach because they have failed to plan with a proactive one.
2020 proactive and reactive planning in management