The new year is already more than two weeks old. As I have done periodically, t’s time for another curation of Peter Drucker’s quotes to help you power through the work week, weekend, and return to throughout the year. Whether or not you’ve made new year’s resolutions, Drucker’s words of wisdom will help you get and stay on track in 2019:
1. “You have to make something different out of yourself, rather than just find a new supply of energy.” – Drucker on Asia, 1995
2. “It is futile to try to guess what products and processes the future will want.
As 2018 ends, let’s mark the 25th anniversary of one of Peter Drucker’s most significant (though lesser-known) books, The Ecological Vision: Reflections on the American Condition. Although it is in the category of his collections of (mostly) previously published articles and essays rather than all-new material, it is worth reading not only for the content, but also as a way of better getting to know Drucker as a human being and an author.
At 466 pages, it contains a wealth of material, divided into eight parts. And as Drucker provides a new introduction for each part, he opens valuable windows into his thinking and his craft, while placing each chapter in historical and intellectual context.
In a world where more people are or will be participating in some form of the Gig Economy, it can seem like everyone is spending more time selling and marketing to everyone else. However, few are prepared for how to build consistent credibility and confidence, confront fear and dread, and believably present our ideas to others, whether individuals, groups, or audiences.
There are many differences between marketing a book, and, for instance, an automobile. But perhaps the biggest is that books have an author (or authors) who must be active in marketing not just a physical or digital representation of their work, but a part of their very being as an individual.
Photo credit: Bigstock
This can lead to ambivalence among authors about the personal tasks in marketing, yet some considered it more doable after the intensive two-day Berrett-Koehler 2018 Marketing Workshop, held July 19-20 in Arlington, Va. The event was open to both BK authors and prospective authors.
“Achievement is addictive.” – Management: Revised Edition, 2008
“The beacons of productivity and innovation must be our guideposts.” – The Ecological Vision, 1993
“Finally there is one continuing theme, from my earliest to my latest book: the freedom, the dignity, the status of the person in modern society, the role and function of organization as instrument of human achievement, human growth and human fulfillment, and the need of the individual for both, society and community.” – The Ecological Vision, 1993
“Success always obsoletes the very behavior that achieved it.” – Management: Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices, 1974
“To get at the new and better, you have to throw out the old, outworn, obsolete, no longer productive, as well as the mistakes, failure and misdirections of effort of the past.” – Managing for the Future, 1992
“If you want to diagram my work, in the center is writing, then comes consulting, then comes teaching.
“The fact is that each writer creates his precursors. His work modifies our conception of the past, as it will modify the future.” – Jorge Luis Borges, Kafka and His Precursors, 1951, in Selected Non-Fictions, page 365; 2000, translated by Eliot Weinberger
August 24 will mark the 119th anniversary of the birth of the Argentine author Jorge Luis Borges. As with last year and in some previous years, I like to honor his life with a post that ideally captures his spirit in some way. This year I call attention to 19 books, all published long after his 1986 death; many containing new translations, added introductions by important writers, or new artwork:
Two lesser-known, but important people associated with Peter Drucker, John E. Flaherty and Tony Bonaparte, passed away in recent years. Flaherty died in 2016, and like Drucker, lived to be 95. Bonaparte died in 2014 at the age of 76.
Everyone is looking for an edge in today’s uncertain economy. Perhaps a somewhat counterintuitive guide to thriving in this era is Michael Nesmith, who has been a part of pop culture for more than 50 years, since his mid-1960s days as a member of The Monkees. These thoughts are prompted by his book Infinite Tuesday: An Autobiographical Riff, released last year in hardback and recently in paperback.
The book (only partly about his experience in The Monkees) is a candid look at a varied life, one in which he owns up to often being his own worst enemy. His honesty about his personal and professional shortcomings and what he has attempted to learn from them is admirable and not something many authors would easily admit.
There are few real-life stories as inspirational as the unfolding saga of the iconic British rock guitarist Wilko Johnson, who first became known in the ‘70s pub rock band Dr. Feelgood. On July 12th, he turned 71, which not that long ago did not seem like a viable possibility. In early 2013 it was announced that Wilko had terminal cancer, and supposedly had under a year to live.
To broadly recap the Wilko-related output since his initial diagnosis:
January 2013: Johnson announces that he has terminal pancreatic cancer, and that he will forego treatment.
He combines both the business and organizational aspects of being Professor and Chair of the Business Administration Department of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, in Beer-Sheva, Israel; and also the Nat Holman Chair in Sports Research, at the school’s Faculty of Business and Management.
Bar-Eli is a genial guide through mastering the psychological aspects of work, based on his own research, and that of his past and present students, colleagues and other academics.