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domingo, 23 de outubro de 2011

The principle of incompetence

The wrong person at the wrong place, eventually, will end up in shit. Once upon a time, in a distant time called “the 60’s”, a crazy man named Laurence J. Peter studied this social phenomena, focusing on corporative environment. He came to the conclusion today known as “Peter Principle”:

"In a hierarchy, every employee tends to rise to his level of incompetence"

Accordantly to Mr. Peter, when promoting someone, the decision tend to be based on the fact that if someone is good enough at a particular job to stand out over its colleagues, this person will be also good at the upper job position and in fact should go to the upper position. Its not considered that different jobs demand a different set of abilities and therefore, use this logic to promote someone doesn’t work is in fact kind stupid, no?

Plus to that, in the world, being recognized as someone of success is wrongly related to become “the boss of something” and since people want to be “someone of success”, it creates a bunch of unhappy people, with lost potentials, trying to be someone they supposed not to be, and also incompetent bosses who understand only part of what they had to understand completely.

It is needed to know which set of abilities are necessary to each job and also to see the people as individuals, knowing their unique talents, potentials and aspirations. Based on this, the right jobs can be defined without giving more names to the list of incompetent people of Mr. Peter.

It is funny how it is simple and make sense. The right person at the right place is happier on works better. The wrong person at the wrong place, like I said above, end up in shit. The not so good person at the not so good place is what happens in most companies all over the world and perhaps that’s why there are so few companies that are really great and special.

So, message of the story, when you create your gigantic corporation to rule over the world, or if someday you become “the boss of something”, don’t do it, ok?

To know more
Peter Principle in Wikipedia
Mr. Peter in Wikipedia