I completely agree, though I do appreciate a technically competent manager because it makes things go quicker in discussions. The problem is that mutual respect is like a dog that speaks Norwegian. That and it's only the foundation that is needed to support all the competencies involved. I've had... 5, maybe 10, managers out of 30 who were competent at anything in particular, let alone management.
Something else occurs to me about respect. The employee is much freer to give it properly when it's earned. The manager is constrained by the machinations of the company and its hierarchy and is more often regulated to "chief apologist" than to "team advocate" no matter her skills or intentions.
This whole thread makes me :(
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