Sunday, November 7, 2010

Adams on Management

Scott Adams, author of the "Dilbert" cartoon series lampooning organizational life, has an excellent article for The Wall Street Journal. His basic thesis is that the prevalence of managers who are "hamster-brained sociopaths" is a real stimulus for our economy. They motivate subordinates to go to work for themselves.

Adams also applies his concept to countries:
The United States is a nation founded by people who couldn't stand the leaders of their old homelands. I'm no geneticist, but I suspect that the "screw it, I'm out of here" attitude can get passed on. We're probably the most disgruntled, self-loathing, hard-to-satisfy people on Earth. It's no wonder our GDP is awesome.
BTW, I spent a career educating managers, some of whom undoubtedly are seen by their subordinates as hamster-brained sociopaths, or worse. Maybe this outcome isn't so bad after all.

Scott Adams is a humorist but I wonder if, like Ann Coulter, he hasn't stumbled across truth in the pursuit of laughs. Along the way Adams takes a couple of hard jabs at affirmative action, jabs only a humorist can get away with.