My name is Rob Lambert and I’m on a mission to help managers in tech companies “upgrade” and cultivate themselves, so that they can be the managers they need to be. Our management will never be more than us as a person. So to become better managers we must become better people – and this requires cultivation.
- To improve and prepare
- To grow or tend
- To promote the growth of
- To encourage or foster
- To acquire,develop, or refine, as by education
I believe that to be a better person (and therefore a better manager) we need to cultivate some basic areas of our lives. These are the Pillars of Cultivated Management that much of my coaching, mentoring, consulting and writing is based around.
- Health and Longevity
- Relevance & Responsiveness
- Money & Finance
- Cultural & Societal Impact
About Rob Lambert
My name is Rob and I’ve had an interesting journey in my career.
I started out as a software tester before becoming an Engineering Manager and now a Vice President in HR.
I’ve scaled agile, reduced release cycles, coached and mentored managers, systematised development processes, trained the trainers, built strong consistent management procesesses, owned corporate communication and helped many people succeed in their career.
I started Cultivated Management after I became a technology manager. I didn’t want to end up like Big Bad Pete. I’ve always tried my hardest to be the best manager I can be. I’m still learning and trying and sharing these insights on this blog.
- I like food and 1980’s cars. I generally post my photos of both on my photo blog and Instagram.
- I’m the author of Remaining Relevant – a book for those looking to grow their career and find new jobs and The Employable Parent Brain.
- I do keynotes and other inspiring talks.
- I love to run my Communication Workshop at events and in-house for companies.
- I write. Lots.
- 8 year’s of blogging on The Social Tester has been condensed in to the Social Tester book.
- I run Web Testing Basics – a website with 36 ideas for those who need to test a website.
- I’m an avid reader and typically get through a book a week – I share my recommendations on the newsletter.
The Pillars of Management
There is more than management theory to being a good manager.
I believe there are 6 main pillars to focus on. The pillars underpin everything else you do as a manager.
Health and Longevity
You need your health. You need your friends and family.
You need the tension between work and life to be tense in the right way. That “way” is personal to you, but don’t sacrifice your health and family for work. Family first.
You cannot sit still. You must be improving year on year. Not being better than others, just being better than yourself last year, last week, yesterday. Life is about moving and growing and learning.
To be a good manager requires you to learn hard things quickly.
Relevance and Responsiveness
The world of work is changing fast.
Good managers keep up with this pace. They are fast to respond to changes in culture, work and technology.
Good managers are also relevant and employable in the market place. You must be hire-able – it will impact your risk taking at work, in a positive way, if you have other options.
Money and Finance
Good managers get more done with less money than other managers. Good managers command higher salaries.
Generating revenue outside of work is also important – by doing this you’ll feel more in control, be more focused at work (ironically) and be willing to take the risks the business needs you to take. I cannot stress enough the importance of a side gig.
Cultural and Societal Impact
If you removed a Cultivated Manager from the business you’d leave a gap. A huge gap.
Not that they are irreplaceable – nobody is. But the gap would be obvious and it would take time to fill.
Cultivated managers are productive. They get stuff done. They hack themselves and their work and find ways to be better. They ship.
They share these techniques with their team. They help others improve. They strive to build flow, not just fill their capacity. They ask the right questions. They don’t try and do more with less, they find new ways of doing things.
My Core Guiding Principles Behind Cultivated Management
These principles are my principles to management. They change as I do. You may resonate with some of them.
- Better is a beautiful word – we can always be better
- Treat People Like People – be kind and treat people as you wish to be treated
- If you’re not having fun with it, be done with it – management and work should be fun for you and your team
- Build stable teams & flow work through them – empower teams and provide autonomy
- Communicate with clarity – all good leaders and managers are clear communicators
- Mistakes are an opportunity to learn – they are essential for improving
- Knowledge and understanding can only be achieved by studying – there are many ways of studying but to improve anything you must first understand it, and that requires studying
- The other way will also work – let’s not be dogmatic about a way of working, lead with kindness instead.
- Don’t inflict help – ask if someone needs help first.
- Why think small? – Set lofty goals and tackle big problems.
- If it doesn’t feel right, make it right – we are all responsible for changing our work.
- Value output, not confidence or the number of hours worked – result matter, the number of hours worked don’t – effectiveness is what is important.
Cultivated Management was founded with a fun and energetic spirit and an ambitious mission, but I also wanted to build a socially conscious business that gives back to the community.
This is why I donate 10% of all revenue at Cultivated Management, and my sister business Parent Brain, to charity.
I also offer a number of free training and coaching sessions for managers working in charitable or not-for-profit organisations.
5% of profits will always go to Naomi House. A charity for life limited children and their families. It’s a charity close to my heart. The other 5% goes to a different charity each year as below.
(completed) 2015 – Naomi House and Unicef
(completed) 2016 – Naomi House and Pencils of Promise
2017 – Naomi House and WWF