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One of my favorite management styles is "MBWA" - or Management By Walking Around. This style allows executives to gather information and opinions about what is happening from diverse sources, find out what's on people's minds, and learn firsthand what is going on in the organization.
In my line of work (strategy development and execution) it is important for management to have their finger the pulse of the organization. MBWA and an open door policy can help executives gather this critical information informally.

I agree. Sitting behind the desk all day one does not get to know their company as well as they could and should.

Everyone has a different management style. I think you have to know your staff and know what works with each one.

I agree. It is also a good idea to give positive feedback to an employee who is doing a good job. That is very motivating.

This is good as long as you have a planned objective. There is something for on the spot development and agree floor presence can be crucial. Beware of the "drive by manager" though.....

Not only should managers walk around, they should engage their employees, with a smile and basic conversation regarding life in general as well as the business. However, as discussed in another post, the manager must know the personality of the employees before engaging them - some may be petrified to even talk to managers! This often occurs from a few employees in assembly line types of employment.

Exactly. Drive by management is not effective and there should be a planned objective. Within that objective, however, there can be unplanned stops to talk to "random" employees. For instance, one could visit site X for reason Y, but then there is still freedom to stop and linger with chance employees along your path.

I think that you cannot learn about and understand your employees by not interacting with them. The more interaction you have with your employees the more capable you become at deciding the management style each will respond to. It is up to the manager to create responsive productive employees. If you never walk about you will not know which employees are producing and which ones are dead weight!

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