Economics and similar, for the sleep-deprived

A subtle change has been made to the comments links, so they no longer pop up. Does this in any way help with the problem about comments not appearing on permalinked posts, readers?

Update: seemingly not

Update: Oh yeah!


Wednesday, January 04, 2012

 
Idea for a management book "Great Ideas From Failed Companies"

The idea being that

a) things like Royal Bank of Scotland or even Enron really weren't all bad - they had to have had a lot going for them in order to get so big in the first place.

b) you are much more likely to get an objective view from something where you know the whole trajectory in advance - if you'd done "Great Ideas From Enron" in 1999, you would probably have picked on the very worst things about the company, but now everyone can see the good as well as the bad. I suspect that if you did "The Goldman Sachs Way" right now, you'd end up with a list of what was trendy in the internal culture there right now, rather than the actual strengths. You also get a more realistic sense of how some of the great strengths of a company like Northern Rock were so intimately linked to their big weakness.

c) it reduces the massive hostage to fortune of the "In Search Of Excellence" effect (notoriously, about a third of the heroes of that book were in serious financial trouble two or three years later). And in doing so, it promotes a commendable modesty in terms of what management theorists might credibly be able to deliver - rather than a magic formula that's gonna make you as great! as Yahoo!, you're saying that look, business is difficult and failure is probably inevitable in the very long run, but here are a few things that you can get right.

I wonder how difficult it would be to get former executives to talk frankly, and what stage in the Kubler-Ross grieving cycle you would do best to catch them?
7 comments this item posted by the management 1/04/2012 03:20:00 AM


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