Recently, I found myself immersed in the pages of the Peter Principle once again. This captivating and humorous book sparked a train of thought that led me to question why some things in our society just don’t seem to work as they should. Of course, we have achieved incredible feats such as transcontinental flight and instantaneous transfer of information, but there still seem to be many obvious things that don’t quite work.
As I dive deeper into the study of large organizations, I find myself pondering how they ever managed to reach the level of success they have. Many of these organizations have processes and systems that would not withstand even a cursory examination of their logical foundations. Yet, they continue to exist and even thrive. Perhaps, it is the slow and steady pace of organizational evolution that creates this apparent chaos.
It’s interesting to note that many of the systems and processes that govern our society are based on laws that were written by just two individuals – Julius Caesar and Napoleon. These iconic figures in history wrote their statutes quickly and decisively, yet they have had a lasting impact on the way we live our lives today. This highlights the notion that sometimes, simplicity and quick decision-making can effectively create lasting systems and processes. However, in the fast-paced and ever-changing world of modern organizations, it is important to strike a balance between simplicity and complexity, and to ensure that processes and systems are continually reviewed and optimized to meet evolving needs.
It is a common occurrence that the larger an organization becomes, the less any given individual cares about the quality of their work. Many people simply show up and go through the motions to collect their paycheck. This apathy could be the root cause of why most things are not done properly.
In light of these observations, conducting a comprehensive investigation into why some things just don’t work as they should seems worthwhile. Perhaps, by doing so, we can shed light on these issues and pave the way for better systems and processes in the future.