Thought fot the day: craftsmen do better (even as managers)
from Merijn Knibbe
It takes a decade to train a craftsman. Or a craftswomen. Longer, in fact. In my country, it takes about fifteen years to master the manual art of surgery – and some more years as well as rigorous specialisation to become a top surgeon. Is this investment worthwhile?
Yes, it is. And not just because top surgeons make fewer mistakes. According to Amanda Goodall, physician led hospitals score a whopping 25% better on a quality index than manager led hospitals:
“hospitals positioned higher in the US News and World Report’s “Best Hospitals” ranking are led disproportionately by physicians“
And again: differences are large. The sad (indeed: alarming) thing: we’re drifting away from ‘the real thing’: “In the past, hospitals were routinely led by doctors. That has changed. In the UK and the US, most hospital chief executive officers (CEOs) are non-physician managers rather than physicians“.
As far as I’m concerned, the same thing holds for companies. Effective leaders often have spent the better part of two decades inside these companies, working their way up from the bottom. And I do visit quite some students doing an internship, or working on thesis, and I do discuss their work with their bosses and read their reports: companies are not an alien world to me.
* has anybody ever seen a ‘neo-liberal’ advise on economic governance which emphasizes the importance of craftsmanship?
* am I right that one of the main reasons why non-specialist managers always press for more power to fire is their ardent wish to get rid of annoying but highly experienced underlings who do know what they are talking about when it comes to managing the place?