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28 OCTOBER 2014

Fredrick Winslow Taylor and the Myth of Efficiency

"[Fredrick Winslow] Taylor sought to precisely measure the movements of factory workers and their timings to make them as efficient as humanly possible. This made him beloved by executives and detested on the factory floor, and it also made him one of the world's first management consultants. In a recent article in The New Yorker, 'Not So Fast,' the historian Jill Lepore takes a hard look at Taylor and his claims for scientific management. According to new research, he was a better salesman than consultant. Many of his facts were made up, and most of his results never materialized. We now know that Lillian Gilbreth, an early proponent of scientific management, had serious doubts about the movement she helped proselytize.

All this is important because Taylor, with his system of scientific management, was the father of efficiency. From scientific management we get the lust for efficiency in business. It became part of the dogma of business schools, almost none of which existed before his time. Business schools from their earliest days have promoted efficiency and the handling of business as something like industrial engineering. From operations to finance, from marketing to sales, business school education has focused on narrowing problems, identifying resources and working to get the most out of the least."

(Adam Hartung, 16 October 2009, Forbes)

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TAGS

20th century • Adam Hartung • business education • business efficiency • business growth • business inertia • business leaders • business leadership • business management • business school education • business schools • Clayton Christensencompetitive advantagecost-cutting • cultural myth • customer demand • customer satisfactiondehumanisationdisruptive innovationdogmaefficiency • efficiency in business • factory floor • factory workerForbesFordismFrederick TaylorGary Hamel • history of technology • ideationincremental improvementsincremental innovationindustrial engineering • innovation resources • Jill Lepore • legacy businesses • Lillian Gilbrethman machine • management consultant • manufacturingmanufacturing industries • measuring movement • order and control • organisation leadership • organisational problems • price wars • products and services • Rakesh Khurana • scientific management • taylorism • The New Yorkerwaste prevention • what organisations do

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
31 OCTOBER 2012

Higher Education Commission: postgraduate system 'failing UK economy'

"The postgraduate system in the UK's universities is failing to produce the number of highly skilled staff needed by a modern economy, a report warns.

The Higher Education Commission says the system is geared towards attracting overseas students, rather than training more UK students.

The report warns that the UK is falling behind in investing in research.

A Department for Business, Innovation and Skills spokeswoman said: 'We recognise there are some concerns.'

The study from the Higher Education Commission calls for urgent reform of the postgraduate sector, saying that in its present state it will cause long–term problems for the UK's economy.

Postgraduate research has become increasingly important for innovative, hi–tech industries."

(Sean Coughlan, 23 October 2012, BBC News)

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TAGS

2012 • Andorra • business leadersDepartment for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS)economic growtheconomy • education funding • education outsourcing • education reformeducation sectorfunding • hi-tech industries • Higher Education Commission • Higher Education Funding Council for England • highly skilled • home student • homegrown talent • ideas and innovation • Indiainternational students • investing in research • Kazakhstanmodern economyoverseas studentsPeoples Republic of China • postgraduate education • postgraduate research • postgraduate sector • postgraduate studies • postgraduate study • postgraduate system • research intensive universitie • skilled workforceskills reviewskills shortagetuition feesUK • UK economy • UK firms • UK universities

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
25 OCTOBER 2012

Joanna Shields leaves Facebook to join UK's Tech City

"Facebook's European boss Joanna Shields is to leave the social network to lead the UK government's investment group for technology start–ups.
The Tech City Investment Organisation (TCIO) supports firms based near the Silicon Roundabout area of east London.
Ms Shields will replace current head Eric Van Der Kleij in January 2013.
'Joanna's experience will be hugely valuable in supporting Tech City as it goes from strength to strength,' Prime Minister David Cameron said.
'The success of Tech City shows just what can happen when we back some of our most innovative and aspiring companies to grow, helping the UK compete and thrive in the global race.'
Ms Shields has been Facebook's vice–president and managing director of Europe, Middle East and Africa since 2010.
Prior to that she worked at Google and teenage–focused social network Bebo."

(Dave Lee, 22 October 2012, BBC News)

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TAGS

2013Bebobusiness leadersDavid Cameroneast LondonEast London Tech CityEric van der KleijFacebookGoogle Inc • Joanna Shields • LondonSilicon Roundaboutsocial networksocial networking • TCIO • Tech City • Tech City Investment Organisation • UK • UKTI • women in businesswomen in leadership positionswomen in technology

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
10 JULY 2012

KAOSPilot: enterprising leader creating value for you and others

"The KaosPilots was founded in 1991 in Århus, Denmark. It grew out of a youth organization called the Front Runners, a truly novel initiative, who worked with cultural and social projects.

The KaosPilots is a self–governing institution comprised of two parts: the school and a consultancy. The purpose of the KaosPilots is 'positive social change through personal growth'.

The consultancy offers the same capabilities that are offered to the students to companies, NGO's and public organizations, but adapted to suit their specific need. For examples of clients please click here.

The program is a three–year long education where the focus lies upon learning by doing through client assignments, from entrepreneurs, consultants, leaders and thought leaders.

The program consists of the disciplines Creative Enterprising Design, Creative Project Design, Creative Process Design and Creative Leadership Design and the education is designed around and operates according to the values Streetwise, Risk–taking, Balance, Compassion, Real World and Playful.

Based on the written application approximately 70 individuals are invited to attend a unique three–day workshop in the spring every year. Through a variety of assignments the applicant provides information to the staff and students who in the end will select a diverse team of about 35 aspiring KaosPilots to begin the program in the fall.

According to a comprehensive survey conducted in 2005 approximately 30% of the graduated KaosPilots work as an entrepreneur.

A KaosPilot is an enterprising leader who creates value for themselves and others."

(Christer Windeløv–Lidzélius)

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TAGS

1991action learning • alternative action • Arhus • autonomousbusiness leaderschange • Chaos Pilots • classical education system • compassionconsultancyconsultant • create value • creative enterprise • creative enterprising design • creative leadership • creative leadership design • creative process • creative process design • creative project design • creative projectscreative thinkingcreativity in the classroom • cultural projects • Denmarkdesign thinkingdivergent thinkingeducation • educational programme • enterprising leader • entrepreneurship • Front Runners (organisation) • information and communication • innovative educational programme • KAOSPilot • Kaospilot Aarhus • knowledge constructionleadershiplearning by doing • live clients • management education • network of professionals • new jobs • new pressures • novel initiative • personal development • personal growth • playfulness • private educational programme • project management • rapidly changing society • real worldrisk-takingschools • self-designed projects • self-governing institution • social changesocial construction of knowledge • social inventiveness • social projects • streetwise • thought leaders • ways of thinkingyoung peopleyouth organisation

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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