The management education myth

This is one of the most interesting articles I’ve ever read about management.

That might sound like a backhanded compliment, the phrase “interesting article about management” has more than a whiff of oxymoron about it – but I don’t mean it that way. Matthew Stewart’s article from The Atlantic is a really interesting challenge to the value of traditional management and business education.

He comes at it from the point of view of an intellectual philosopher who never went to business school. This background suggests that he’s more than comfortable with theory and ambiguity and the inevitable uncertainty of human organisations, so he’s not getting impatient with the wooliness of it all. Quite the opposite, it’s the hack “science” of the business school (and the management consultant) that he finds frustrating.

Imprecision and guesswork dressed up to look like posh sciency numbers.

So far, so good. I couldn’t agree more!

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Leadership in a time of (midlife) crisis

According to Daniel Levinson, I’m in a transitional phase.

In his theory of life structure, adulthood isn’t just one big blob of stability between childhood and old age, it’s a phased period with islands of stability separated by chunks of transition.

I’m in one of those chunks.

I’m in the “midlife transition“. This happens to people my age, people forced to tick the 40-45 age bracket on forms. Sometimes the word “transition” is changed to “crisis” when discussing this phase.

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