What it takes to run a bank

“Management is doing things right. Leadership is doing the right things.”

So said America’s most famous management consultant ever, Peter Drucker. His famous aphorism is not so easily understood, let alone accomplished.

Though Drucker believed the role of management consisted of putting the right people in the right jobs, his emphasis was focused on the job. He was concerned with fundamental questions. The first question a business had to answer, he said, was “What business are you in?” And the only valid definition of business purpose, he believed, was to create a customer.

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This isn’t the hierarchical mumbo-jumbo it might seem to be. When I taught business management several decades ago, I at first resisted this style of thinking. But I gradually came to believe that Drucker was more correct than I had been willing to acknowledge. By the time I stopped teaching the management course based on Drucker, I actually believed what I was teaching.


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