07 March 2007

Dynamic management dynamism

An insightful discourse on the art of management:

'...like many people who are instinctively bad at something, the Archchancellor prided himself on how good at it he was.  Ridcully was to management what King Herod was to the Bethlehem Playgroup Association.  His mental approach to it could be visualised as a sort of business flowchart with, at the top, a circle entitled 'Me, who does the telling' and, connected below it by a line, a large circle entitled 'Everyone else'. 

Until now this had worked quite well, because, although Ridcully was an impossible manager, the University was impossible to manage and so everything worked seamlessly.  And it would have continued to do so if he hadn't suddenly started to see the point in preparing career development packages and, worst of all, job descriptions.  As the Lecturer in Recent Runes put it: 'He called me in and asked me what I did, exactly.  Have you ever heard of such a thing?  What sort of question is that?  This is a university!'

- From 'The Last Continent' by Terry Pratchett, 1998

[The Archchancellor had been inspired to carry out his fit of hands-on mangement by a tome entitled 'How to Dynamically Manage People for Dynamic Results in a Caring Empowering Way in Quite a Short Time Dynamically']

No comments: