Showing posts from May, 2012

Three Questions for Exploring Organizational Development

I just finished reading a fascinating book, One from Many: VISA and the Rise of Chaordic Organization , by Dee Hock . The book explores three questions and tells a story how this exploration by Dee Hock led to the formation of VISA . The three questions are:  1. Why are organizations, everywhere, political, commercial, and social, increasingly unable to manage their affairs? 2. Why are individuals, everywhere, increasingly in conflict with and alienated from the organizations of which they are part? 3. Why are society and biosphere increasingly in disarray?  If you have anything to do with Organizational Development, you may enjoy the book. 

The Concerned Citizens of California


Marshall Plan

Policy making is a complex subject. The best piece of policy I have ever read is George Marshall's speech at Harvard. I read it on regular basis. It has served me well in managing businesses, thinking of strategy, and in Organization Design. Following is the speech: Marshall Plan Speech June 5, 1947, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts Mr. President, Dr. Conant, members of the Board of Overseers, Ladies and Gentlemen: I'm profoundly grateful and touched by the great distinction and honor and great compliment accorded me by the authorities of Harvard this morning. I'm overwhelmed, as a matter of fact, and I'm rather fearful of my inability to maintain such a high rating as you've been generous enough to accord to me. In these historic and lovely surroundings, this perfect day, and this very wonderful assembly, it is a tremendously impressive thing to an individual in my position. But to speak more seriously, I need not tell you that t

Business Schools Teach a lot of Nonsense and other Learnings from Munger and Buffett

Omaha, Nebraska was probably the most exciting place to be on May 5, 2012. I paid my annual homage to Charlie Munger and Warren Buffet last weekend at the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting in Omaha. Just like previous years, it was a great show which offered wisdom and humor. You can see the notes from last year's meeting here . Following are my random notes from the 2012 meeting:  35,000+ shareholders at the meeting 1. Make decisions based on opportunity cost.  2. CEO of any large organization, especially financial organization, should be the Chief Risk Officer (CRO) as well. Risk assessment is a very important capability for a CEO and is right up there with capital allocation. Buffett is the CRO at Berkshire.  3. Risk is not accessed properly by people because it is not taught properly in business schools. Use of sigmas to measure risk is stupid.  4. Ability to commit and follow through make Berkshire trustworthy. When the opportunity is rig