Consultants eventually leave, which makes them excellent scapegoats for major management blunders.
Executives can get away with having a clean desk. For the rest of us, it looks like you're not working hard enough.
The biggest change in the workplace of the future will be the widespread realization that having one idiot boss is a much higher risk than having many idiot clients.
I have never compared myself to my managers ... although I have made some big financial decisions on my own and decided on new investments, I have never involved myself in managerial decisions.
A molehill man is a pseudo-busy executive who comes to work at 9 a.m. and finds a molehill on his desk. He has until 5 p.m. to make this molehill into a mountain. An accomplished molehill man will often have his mountain finished before lunch.
One lesson a man learns from Harvard Business School is that an executive is only as good as his health.
Executives are like joggers. If you stop a jogger, he goes on running on the spot. If you drag an executive away from his business, he goes on running on the spot, pawing the ground, talking business.
Managers are people who do things right and leaders are people who do the right things.
Of one thing be certain: if a CEO is enthused about a particularly foolish acquisition, both his internal staff and his outside advisors will come up with whatever projections are needed to justify his stance. Only in fairy tales are emperors told that they are naked.
The attitude of disrespect that many executives have today for accurate reporting is a business disgrace. And auditors ... have done little on the positive side. Though auditors should regard the investing public as their client, they tend to kowtow instead to the managers who choose them and dole out their pay.
If you are having as much fun running a big corporation as you did running a piece of it, then you are probably interfering too much with the people who really make it happen.
To be dilatory about giving orders, but to expect absolute punctuality, that is called being a tormentor.
Decisions of the kind the executive has to make are not made well by acclamation. They are made well only if based on the clash of conflicting views ... The first rule in decision-making is that one does not make a decision unless there is disagreement.
The most common cause of executive failure is inability or unwillingness to change with the demands of a new position. The executive who keeps on doing what he has done successfully before is almost bound to fail.
Leadership consists of nothing but taking responsibility for everything that goes wrong and giving your subordinates credit for everything that goes well.
Sometimes it is the menhigher upwho most need revamping - and they themselves are the last to recognize it.
The salary of the chief executive of the large corporation is not a market award for achievement. It is frequently in the nature of a warm personal gesture by the individual to himself.
Passionate leadership won't succeed if contradictory signals are sent out.
The CEO's role in raising a company's corporate IQ is to establish an atmosphere that promotes knowledge sharing and collaboration.
It is practically impossible for a top management man, or even middle management, to be doing the degree and level of work that he should be doing and, at the same time, have a clean desk.
You can know a person by the kind of desk he keeps ... If the president of a company has a clean desk ... then it must be the executive vice president who is doing all the work.
If businessmen always made the right decisions, business wouldn't be business.
Praise should always be given in public, criticism should always be given in private.
When it's time to make a decision about a person or problem ... trust your intuition ... act.
I'm not an entrepreneur. I like rules too much and entrepreneurs break rules.
I think leadership is valuing the time you spend with your people more than anything else you do.
You're fired!No other words can so easily and succinctly reduce a confident, self-assured executive to an insecure, groveling shred of his former self.
I don't know any executive who ever thought about stress, although a lot of other people do. No one ever dies of hard work. But a lot of people die once they retire from an active job.
Big things and little things are my job. Middle level management can be delegated.
The tail tracks the head. If the head moves fast the tail will keep up the same pace. If the head is sluggish, the tail will drop.
I can tell more about how someone is likely to react in a business situation from one round of golf than I can from a hundred hours of meetings.
I try to keep in touch with the details - you can't keep in touch with them all, but you've got to have a feel for what's going on.
Generally, large companies are so inwardly directed that staff memorandums about growing bureaucracy get more attention than the dwindling competitive advantage of being big in the first place. David, who has a life, needn't use a slingshot. Goliath, who doesn't, is too busy reading office memos.
We have a technique at Hewlett-Packard for helping managers and supervisors know their people and understand the work their people are doing ... Management by Walking About.
You have a responsibility to shape the vision of a company, and you know whatever process you choose will determine ultimately the well-being of the organization.
Chief executives, who themselves own few shares of their companies, have no more feeling for the average stockholder than they do for baboons in Africa.
The leader must know, must know that he knows, and must be able to make it abundantly clear to those about him that he knows.
Do not delegate an assignment and then attempt to manage it yourself - you will make an enemy of the overruled subordinate.
To be a leader in this new economy, you have to love risk - which means patterning your life on the heroic, not on the strategic. Acting boldly is better than acting knowingly.
Leadership is not so much about technique and methods as it is about opening the heart. Leadership is about inspiration - of oneself and of others. Great leadership is about human experiences, not processes. Leadership is not a formula or a program, it is a human activity that comes from the heart and considers the hearts of others. It is an attitude, not a routine.
It's better to be the head of a chicken than the tail of a cow.
Leadership is the process of achieving a dream together, especially when that dream seems impossible to achieve.
Money isn't what motivates entrepreneurs; it is acknowledgement - a craving for your ideas to be acknowledged.
Of all business activities, 99% are routine ... The entire 100% can be handled by managing the 1% of exceptions.
Administrators are cheap and easy to find and cheap to keep. Leaders - risk takers: they are in very short supply. And ones with vision are pure gold.
The priority in life is to keep an eye on the business and not to get lured into the high social life with groupie-type poseurs who wish to be seen with the new blue-eyed boy.
Anyone can hold the helm when the sea is calm.
Get to know your people. What they do well, what they enjoy doing, what their weaknesses and strengths are, and what they want and need to get from their job.
If you don't do it excellently, don't do it at all. Because if it's not excellent, it won't be profitable or fun, and if you're not in business for fun or profit, what the hell are you doing there?
Nobody should be chief executive officer of anything for more than five or six years. By then he's stale, bored, and utterly dependent upon his own cliches.
One of the most important tasks of a manager is to eliminate his people's excuses for failure.
All the president is is a glorified PR man who spends his life flattering, kissing, and kicking people to get them to do what they are supposed to do anyway.
Not everyone is capable of being a CEO. It means you don't get to pal around with all your employees and that you leave the sorority/fraternity approach to life behind, and you take on a role that is, in some respects, lonely.
When you retire ... you go from who's who to who's that, like stepping off the pier (or) achieving statutory senility.