Inverted Pyramid Style: The Key to Effective Management


For several years now, Scott Gaddis found himself standing before a vast crowd talking about different management styles. He also wrote content regarding the said field. According to him, he owes his knowledge and expertise to his boss (he preferred not to mention).

Scott said that in the mid-90s, his boss taught him about the inverted leadership style. 

Scott said that his boss sat beside him and opened the serious discussion by drawing a triangle. He observed that his boss divided the triangle into three and labeled the base as ‘doers,’ followed by ‘thinkers and doers,’ and the apex was ‘thinkers.’ Scott’s boss also added the company’s mission and vision on the triangle’s opposite sides. 

According to Scott, his boss stressed that the future of the company greatly depends on its key personnel. This is because company leaders are tasked to determine the right person to accomplish a specific job. Managers also need to check who among the employees must be assigned at the base of the triangle.

Scott said that he was very confident that his boss would put him on the ‘thinkers’ plot of the triangle since he handled the Environment, Health, and Safety (EHS) unit at that time. But Scott was wrong. Instead, his boss drew opposing arrows.  According to his boss, the opposing arrows signify continuity. His boss further stressed that Scott needs to ask ideas from his team. He was also asked to report the suggestions (of his people) to his superiors and get back to his team once the feedback from the higher-ups is available.

That very moment, Scott realized the significant role of his people. He now fully understood the essence of the inverted triangle. Indeed, the people on top (tip of the triangle) will never succeed without the help of the people on the field (base).