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On the slippery slope, beware those unintended consequences
| Dale Dauten (The Corporate Curmudgeon)
Posted on 01/20/2003 11:26:43 AM PST by FairWitness
Edited on 05/11/2004 5:34:07 PM PDT by Jim Robinson.
"For a list of all the ways that technology has failed to improve the quality of life, please press three."
Twenty years ago, the majority of newly recruited executives failed. Now, thanks to two decades of evolving human-resources philosophy, research, testing and execution, the majority of newly recruited executives "leave to pursue other opportunities."
(Excerpt) Read more at stltoday.com ...
TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society
KEYWORDS: executives; hiring; jobs; peterprinciple
I once asked one of my wife's cousins, who has taught "business", and also consulted, for many years, "What proportion of companies are truly competent and efficient?" His answer was, "None!" A business survives, according to him, only because, and so long as, the competition is not significantly less incompetent and inefficient!
"First, you don't want to ever be in that position again, so the first thing you do is make sure that person finds a strong No. 2. Then, since you're paying more, you expect more - you add responsibilities and pressure. And there aren't going to be any raises anytime soon. "So what happens is that both sides are less happy, only now the executive is already mentally conditioned to leave, and soon the company has a good and cheaper backup in place, so everything is aligned for the person to fail."
In my last outside job the vice president told me he wouldn't let me bid on lucrative research contracts because I was too good and if I left there would be nobody who could take my place to do the work. He eventually kept me from working on anything substantial. It cost the company millions.
posted on 01/20/2003 12:21:16 PM PST
He eventually kept me from working on anything substantial. It cost the company millions.
Sounds very rational (not!) to me.
I can certainly attest to this. I was a six figure manager for a company called F5 Networks. I was fired for responding truthfully (silly me) to a senior execs request for suggestions to improve the companys overall product quality. The exec in question felt that my suggestions for sound QA management test to standards, ship to standards, hire real manufacturing engineers to properly guide and work with contract manufacturers, independent QA risk assessment made to the board of directors prior to ship, etc - threatened his job. In fact, the idiot in question responded to my emailed suggestions with, "Are you saying that I'm not competent to do my job?"
I think that we know the answer to that. Really a shame, too. The company persists to this day in lowest-bidder parts and components sourcing in order to come up with low COGS numbers. None of which means a damn thing if your stuff won't hold up in an enterprise environment. This results in a never-ending series of Chinese fire drills wherein countless man-hours are spent looking for root cause for the failure when the real answer could have been delivered in just one sentence: "Don't buy cheap crap."
I became convinced that the company's entire rationale was to play to the market analysts rather than delivering world-class product. That, in my view, it utterly contemptable. It may be legal, but it sure isn't ethical.
posted on 01/20/2003 2:55:39 PM PST
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