In a breakthrough Organization Man for the twenty-first century, bestselling author Art Kleiner reveals that every organization is driven by a desire to satisfy a Core Group of influential individuals and explains why understanding this group’s expectations is the key to success.
When corporate leaders announce, with seeming sincerity, “We make our decisions on behalf of our shareholders,” their words are taken at face value. But as recent news stories prove, this imperative is routinely violated. In Who Really Matters , Art Kleiner argues that the dissonance between a declared mission and actual operation can be seen at organizations large and small. All organizations have one motive in common. Every decision—which projects to back, who to promote, or how to spend money—is affected by the perceived wants and needs of a core group of people “who really matter.”
The composition of the group can differ from organization to organization. Often, the most senior people in the hierarchy are members—but not always. Sometimes, the people who “matter” can extend far down the corporate ladder, or even reach outside the company to include key customers, labor union leaders, and stockholders. Kleiner gives readers clues about how to identify a core group’s real mission by observing its day-to-day actions, listening to the fundamental message it sends employees, examining its management of new members; understanding the ideas that shape its policies about management, money, and the way the world works; and avoiding the taboos governing the way it operates.
Whether you’re a member of the Core Group—or want to be—this deft, engaging blend of argument and observation, anecdotes and advice, is the one guide you’ll need to achieve your career goals and aspirations by navigating the hidden pathways in any organization, large or small.
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|Title of Religion eBook: Who Really Matters|
|Release Date: 10-14-2003|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Crown Publishing Group|
This eBook download is available in the following formats:
|Parent title||Who Really Matters|
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Who Really Matters
The Customer Comes Eighth
Back in the early 1980s, when writing mission statements was just an infant management fad, a division of the Exxon Oil Company held an employee conference to announce their new "core values." Enshrined as number one on the list was this simple sentence: "The customer comes first."
That night, the division executives met for dinner, and after a few drinks, a brash young rising star named Monty proposed a toast. "I just want you to know," he said, "that the customer does not come first." Then Monty named the president of the division. "He comes first." He named the European president. "He comes second." And the North American president. "He comes third." The Far Eastern president "comes fourth." And so on for the fifth, sixth, and seventh senior executives of that division, all of whom were in the room. "The customer," concluded Monty, "comes eighth."
Said the Exxon retiree who told me this story: "There was an agonized silence for about ten seconds. I thought Monty would get fired on the spot. Then one of the top people smiled, and the place fell apart in hysterical laughter. It was the first truth spoken all day."
"The customer comes first" is one of the three great lies of the modern corporation. The other two are: "We make our decisions on behalf of our shareholders" and "Employees are our most important asset." Government agencies have their own equivalent lies: "We are here to serve the public interest." Nonprofits, associations, and labor unions have theirs: "Above all e