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The Management Myth

Publication Date: 2006-06-06

Ohanian Comment: This is an elegant, laugh-out-loud essay. Think DIBELS while you're reading about loading-pig-iron-onto-railway-cars theory. Here's Frederick Winslow Taylor's scientific method in a nutshell: Think harder! Work smarter! Buy a stopwatch!

Could DIBELS exist without a stopwatch?

The author observes, Taylorism, like much of management theory to come, is at its core a collection of quasi-religious dicta on the virtue of being good at what you do, ensconced in a protective bubble of parables (otherwise known as case studies).

Reading First, anyone?

Taylor, if mentioned at all these days is just seen as a weird man with a stopwatch. How many kindergartners will have their academic careers held hostage by a stopwatch before people acknowledge how weird and damaging DIBELS is?

From The Atlantic Monthly, June 2006

The URL for this page is http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200606/stewart-business

Most of management theory is inane, writes our correspondent, the founder of a consulting firm. If you want to succeed in business, don?t get an M.B.A. Study philosophy instead.

NOTE: The Atlantic won't allow me to post this article, but it is well worth your while to go to their site and read it . . . even if you must subscribe. After all, we should keep publications like this one in business.

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