The Grey Chronicles


Revisiting 101 Greatest Ideas in Management: Self-Help

101 Greatest Ideas in  Management

This continues the post on Auren Uris’ 1986 book: 101 Greatest Ideas in Management reviewing management ideas on Self-Help.

The following is a selection of the four ideas which throughout my professional and personal life, I have applied to master the tools of my trade and executive savvy, or seen the use of which to the extremes, which are sometimes the highlight of my blog, such as:

"Edifice" Complex: “is an executive neurosis that feeds on power and status.” A takeoff from Oedipus complex, Bennett Cerf, a TV personality, is credited for the phrase. Two possibilities where this complex emerges is through proposal of expanding one’s mandated activities, and the other, through a power grab.

Annotations : I have seen these during reorganizations, first in 1995 during the first retrenchment at NSC, then during the liquidator’s phase, and even at the present dispensation at the former NSC.

Executive Dissent is an expression of dissatisfaction caused by personal reasons or principle.

Annotations : Without criticism, which is the tenet I aim to live by even in these blogs, improvement is often impossible. Dissent and criticism can even benefit mental health, come up with fresh insights and breakthroughs as well as improve creativity and initiative.

Executive Toolrack: “Man is a tool-using animal . . . Without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all,” says Thomas Carlyle. . . . Modern technology and a taste for innovation have brought an array of tools into the executive suite. Executive tools, such as: computer, phone, blackboard, calculator, work tables, calendars, timepieces, radio and TV, projectors, recorders, and cameras, are few examples which an executive can use to improve job effectiveness.

Annotations : I used the computer since 1989, and at present it became my ‘second wife’ as my beloved wife said. Without this laptop, I would not be able to document these blogs, research and write my master’s thesis, do my supervisory office work. Present models of cellphones become more like the Swiss knife of technology; not only one can receive or make calls, SMS or e-mails but one could tract time and appointments; take pictures, sound bytes and movie clips; listen to the news, watch TV and video; calculate; make notes and reminders; and connect to the Web! Although, I personally hate gadgets which could do all that, I rely more on my cellphone than those pieces of Post It notes for a scheduled meeting, or carrying a separate calculator, a personal radio, calendar and a camera.

Reading: “Management is a profession of continual development, and practitioners must monitor the flow of business news, information, and comment or risk isolation by ignorance.”

Annotations : Even before I got hold of Uris’ book, I have been fond of reading: historical accounts, biographies, non-fiction books, and for the past ten years, management and business books. I even developed a passion for collecting paper-based and electronic books. Before, I was accumulating for a library of hard- and soft-bound books; now my laptop computer is a virtual library of e-books on engineering, business and management, mathematics and the sciences, writing and literature, and a score on self-help and DIY! Ever since reading Francis Bacon’s essay ‘Of Reading’ in which he wrote: “Reading maketh a man.” I made it a point to read at least one magazine article before turning in to sleep, and finish at least one good book each month.


Uris, Auren (1986). 101 Greatest Ideas in Management New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1986. 310pp. back to text


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