Management Bug: Lack of Roles and Ownership Definition

A MngtBug is a problem, cause or impact in a human manager’s decision which produces an incorrect or unexpected result.
Every other week we share a little bit of our knowledge base on social media and our newsletter. Since we believe the Management Bugs are common and typical, every description is created and adapted from articles, blog posts and definitions other people wrote.

This week’s MngtBug is…

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Have you ever seen this MngtBug? How did you solve it?
Share your story!


This week’s Lack of Roles and Ownership Definition is a recipe for disaster in any company.

By definition, the role is the position or purpose that someone or something has in a situation, organization, society, or relationship. Ownership is the fact that you own something.
(Extracted and adapted from and

Ownership is the mentality that stimulates and causes enthusiasm among the members of a team. It’s about goals, ideas and a feeling of camaraderie. Ownership cannot be delegated; it is a feeling that is held or generated by professionals who see the success of the company as an overarching goal of the whole team.

Some professionals naturally think in this manner; however, the company will only be able to take full advantage of this desirable attribute if it follows a policy of inclusion, not a rigid hierarchy.

Some positive symptoms from professionals who have a feeling of ownership:

  • Display an interest in the history of the company;
  • Demonstrate an interest in areas of the organization other than their own;
  • Show a desire to study, learn techniques and perform tasks that are not within their job description;
  • Feels curiosity about goals and metrics, attempting to understand and improve them;
  • Can accept criticism and use it to improve processes and results;
  • Capable of organizing themselves to achieve the results they are responsible for and to try to understand the processes of other areas;
  • Suggests new ideas without expecting their immediate implementation;
  • Does not hesitate to help when noticing some problems outside their specific area of responsibility;
  • Open to new ideas;
  • Does not lose motivation when faced with setbacks or mistakes;
  • And, without a doubt, self-motivated.

(Extracted and adapted from

Centralized or decentralized management should consider the diagnostic of this MngtBug as their responsibility and create the conditions to mitigate/eliminate this problem and foster the above mentioned positive symptoms.

Known Associates

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This MngtBug has been mentioned in relation to a number of MngtFixes such as…

“Job Descriptions Definition”,
“Stakeholder involvement on Process Definition”,
“Delegation Poker Implementation”,
“Temporary Employee Rotation”,
“Company Strategy Definition”,
and of course “Roles and Ownership Definition”!

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What about you? What do you want more or less of on medium post?
Do you have other suggestions?

I would love to know more about your feedback and stories so that we can learn, share and grow together!

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Have a nice week and remember…
Human Managers should strive to be humans while managing and be managed as humans!

Written by

Eduardo Espinheira is a Consultant, Facilitator, Manager, Public Speaker, Creator of the Management Bugs&Fixes and the Machiavellian PM Stories

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