Sunday, October 01, 2006

Cartoons thanks to Hugh MacLeod, the Brit that draws cartoons on the back of business cards (mine included).

Here's a writing you may have once seen but, like me, may have forgotten. My thanks to Kipper McGee, programming wizard in residence at ABC's WLS for the reminder.

The president of a large corporation gave his tickets to the evening performance of Schubert's "Unfinished Symphony" to the company's efficiency expert. The next morning, the president found the following written report on his desk:

1. For considerable periods, the oboe players had nothing to do. The numbers should be reduced and their work spread over the whole orchestra.

2. All twelve violins were playing identical notes. This seems an unnecessary duplication, and the staff of this section should be drastically reduced.

3. Much effort was absorbed in the playing of grace-notes. This seems an excessive refinement and it is recommended that all 16th notes be rounded up to the nearest eighth. If this were done, it should be possible to use trainees and lower-grade operators at reduced salaries.

4. No useful purpose is served by repeating with the horns, the same passages that have already been handled by the strings. If all such redundant passages were eliminated, the concert could be reduced from two hours to twenty minutes. In fact, if Schubert had attended to these matters, he probably should have been able to finish the symphony after all.

Imagination is a powerful thing. Imagination is what separates the winners from the losers. The breath taking original from the banal me-too copy. Putting imagination to work in your enterprise is the beginning, the first step required to achieve great, sustainable ROI.

Imagination > Creativity > Innovation

Thank you, thank you and thank you, really! At the NAB/R&R meet folks kept bringing up A Great General Manager. Again and again they asked for a copy. My apologies for failing to do a better job making people aware of how/where to find it. It's here. (Now...because of your requests, interest and encouragement, beginning work on a new draft, an update of A Great Sales Manager. Your thoughts are most welcome.)

Taking a blog holiday, back on Tuesday. My best wishes to you - have a simply amazing week.


Anonymous said...

As much as I have always enjoyed being a charter member of your "Greats" list, I worry that my friend and current boss, Mickey Luckoff is never there. Am I reading too fast? Has he not been successful enough (winning every SF Arbitron for 30 or more years)? Could it be an oversight? I can't hold his sweat socks in any leadership race.

Ron Fell
San Francisco

Dave said...


The intrinsic flaw in my list of those who have served to inspire the monograph is one of prior personal association. To take your point, I am not aware of any GM more accomplished than the great Mickey Luckoff. I accept your suggestion and have added him to the "Greats". Forgive the oversight. Should you, dear reader, after reading A Great GM, say to yourself "what about ---, can not believe she/he is not on that list!" Please do as my friend, the great leader and "best man" Ron Fell has done, get in touch. Great hearing from you Ron!