The Vision Thing


I remember George Bush Sr. admitting that he wasn’t all that good at “the vision thing”. If my performance appraisals at Tinplate R&D are to be believed, then I’m also lacking in this department. Not exactly sure what was meant by that, but maybe that’s why I was deemed deficient in that department.

Mind you, if I see how British Steel was going about their business of deciding on their strategy and implementing it, I have my doubts about this vision thing. Was it all that clever to underinvest in your core and instead spend your money on a mini-mill in Tuscaloosa ? Or to close one of two coke ovens in Port Talbot just when the demand from a China cranked up the coke world price ? For people who were in a position where you’re supposed some degree of vision, those were pretty daft decisions (I know, 20/20 hindsight is a wonderful thing).

Closer to home, I’ve never understood that senior managers never bothered to find out how much man hours was spent producing the reports they wanted. And hence they never found out the hidden waste involved with people going through mindless loops and spending between a quarter and half of their time unproductively in producing regular business reports that could and should have been automated. But then again, IT is only advanced plumbing, and whoever heard of a plumber with vision ?

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