Just as strong leaders are invaluable in setting the organization’s vision, strong managers are needed to communicate and operationalize that vision. They play a pivotal role in planning, organizing, leading and coordinating the resources to get the work done. Andy Wong was a strong frontline manager who significantly influenced and made tremendous contribution. When Andy Wong joined the OS division in 1984, the unit was losing $3 to $5 million per year ; morale was low due to downsizing.
He identified micro replication as the core technology of the unit and used formal ; informal channels to recruit specialists. His team developed a manufacturing strategy that reduced costs by 50% and increased quality. When Wong took over as the business manager in 1989, the current products were deemphasized since they were not profitable. He quickly recognized they had the “ammunition” but not “an aiming device” – a means to direct those internal assets towards external opportunities. Frontline managers have skills to meet both short and longer team challenges.
The framework is built on four stages and each stage is comprised of a core set of competencies and skills and is designed to prove a strategic blend of leadership, operational and people management experiences. Frontline managers must know to engage, persuade, motivate and empower their employees. Wong was very effective in searching and engaging other employees of the organization. He wanted a professional marketing manager. Wong hired Rob Noirjean through internal recruitment to focus the technology on the right products.