More Leadership Insights from Peter Drucker

Last month we dedicated a post to the leadership wisdom and insights of Peter Drucker (1909-2005). (If you missed that blog, you can read it by clicking here.) As you most likely know, Peter Drucker, widely recognized as the father of management, formulated many business concepts that we now take for granted. As an influential writer (39 books) and management consultant Drucker is one of the best known and most widely influential thinkers and writers on the subject of business management. He popularized the concept of MBO (Management by Objectives).

I was first introduced to Peter Drucker’s writings more than 30 years ago. I appreciated his insights then and still do. You may or may not agree with everything he said, but here are some more of his gems:

“Suppliers and especially manufacturers have market power because they have information about a product or a service that the customer does not and cannot have, and does not need if he can trust the brand. This explains the profitability of brands.”

“Teaching is the only major occupation of man for which we have not yet developed tools that make an average person capable of competence and performance. In teaching we rely on the ‘naturals,’ the ones who somehow know how to teach.”

“The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself.”

“The best way to predict the future is to create it.”

“The computer is a moron.”

“The entrepreneur always searches for change, responds to it, and exploits it as an opportunity.”

“The most efficient way to produce anything is to bring together under one management as many as possible of the activities needed to turn out the product.”

“The most important thing in communication is hearing what isn’t said.”

“The new information technology… Internet and e-mail… have practically eliminated the physical costs of communications.”

“The only thing we know about the future is that it will be different.”

“The productivity of work is not the responsibility of the worker but of the manager.”

“The purpose of a business is to create a customer.”

“There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all.”

“Time is the scarcest resource and unless it is managed nothing else can be managed.”

“Today knowledge has power. It controls access to opportunity and advancement.”

“Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window.”

“Unless commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes… but no plans.”

“We can say with certainty – or 90% probability – that the new industries that are about to be born will have nothing to do with information.”

“We now accept the fact that learning is a lifelong process of keeping abreast of change. And the most pressing task is to teach people how to learn.”

“When a subject becomes totally obsolete we make it a required course.”

Do you have a favorite Drucker quote? If so, let us know.

Stay the Course,

Dr. Greg Morris


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