Management : comparison is not always a good idea


Misuse of the systematic comparison and encrypted in our private and public organizations.

I want to contribute some arguments here in my little opinion that employees seem interesting swirls in the structural model of the contemporary capitalism. The globalization of the economy and communications brings comprehensive knowledge and therefore clarifies easy comparison between all private and public players.

Know quickly, well, then compare all

First classic and very quick observation: economic knowledge has become global, detailed and immediate. Any user can access detailed data such as company or public organization. The data are published, communicated, very accessible. What is quite remarkable is the speed of information, its frequent repetition over time. Was shortened somewhat timely publication of economic and financial indicators. quarterly, monthly indicators and weekly, with daily turnover. Must be informed to be responsive.

Knowledge often leads quickly comparisons of all kinds. Let us first to firms. What will we see?Comparison of the results, performance, staffing, individuals, management styles.Shareholders, investors, bankers naturally gradually requested or the best investment markets returns. Madoff has thrived on this finding. This naturally led companies to increasingly high performance even for those who could not afford it.

This systematic comparative relayed constantly by dashboards, analyzes of efficiency have transformed the management and the resources that companies were ready to mobilize to meet some stakeholders. Global standards are needed leaders and their processes are rigorously and implemented. Everything happened in filter analysis. It normalizes, standardizes, labeled. The phenomenon affects, indeed, much larger companies than SMEs which are less penetrated by the management theories and shareholder pressure.

Compare today ask tomorrow, after tomorrow require

This comprehensive global number knowledge therefore undoubtedly puts pressure on the overall system to performs more, especially as the criteria are almost exclusively quantitative;revenue, profits, growth, return on invested capital, interest rates, debt ratios of all kinds. The modern world requires the performance: people, organizations; there are no plans to produce less, earn less, work less. The race for performance induces complex montages and sacrifices to achieve the desired results. We must go in the nails, meet the requirements to leave sometimes cheat to get there.

All private organizations can not keep up, the pressure increases, stress and internal reorganizations are linked, reengineering is permanent, numerous social damage. Christophe André, psychiatrist, in a book on happiness says that a small revenue to happiness is not to compare, compare. Management in the constant comparison, benchmarking has become the rule.
To qualify my remarks, it is clear that comparisons affect unevenly our organizations.

Small structures were able, me he seems better withstand these phenomena may be due for example to the proximity of men, family or local culture that passes through them. The comparison is also a stimulant for some failing organizations. Margin of progress is possible here and there and it is not about living in a juxtaposition of bubbles disconnected from each other. Not to autarky and self-satisfaction. The other is of course a way to think, to make its internal revolution, to enrich, to learn. Do we still need to define the relevance of reconciliation criteria.

What public organizations that is to say, states, regions, cities, administrations? Same knowledge, even systematic calibration process. Who has not seen the filing of such a city, like hospital, such faculty, such a tax scheme? The mobility of individuals in all cases more advantaged allows them to arbitrate, to choose their menu based on the information obtained.We choose her motherhood, her school, her hospital, city, region and may be his state of residence according to the published criteria. Indeed, the comparison affects all our states that are now entered in competition in our own particular European area. The crisis has fueled its findings.

The bad states must follow good, the countries south of the northern countries, France Germany. Same process as for the firms. Again, some states in structure, culture, history can not follow. Greece cheated to return to the Maastricht criteria. Is it a coincidence that the rating agencies have become so widespread? A, B, C back in elementary school.

It also puts logically private and public organizations compete. Private puts pressure on the public. We must learn from best practices in the private and apply them to the public. The subtext is often poor public response to the remarkable performance of the private. Is it still reasonable? Is it always desirable? Is it still relevant?

More is better

First observation: the comparison in itself is not always bad if it allows everyone to challenge themselves and move on. The first concern me he seems here is that motivations are often exclusively financial and quantitative. Better is more. More profit, productivity, efficiency.Admittedly, the comparison criteria of our public organizations are more qualitative than private, but there is also a significant increase in sales, quantitative even in this sphere.

Best or should I say most often become the enemy of good. In advertising, Mr. more disappeared, but LCL as his last campaign with the slogan: more, more, a little bit more, more, more. Everywhere the percentage, ratio, filling, encrypted productivity short-term gain ground. Figures have won the battle of reasoning. Dangerous path that creates daily human tragedies.

Come on Federer

Second point: we do not mix apples and oranges reminded me of my dear teacher, Mrs. Ader.You have to compare what can be. Did you ask a musician to play like Mozart? Asks are we a football player dribble like Messi, a tennis the Federer backhand? No, of course. There are champions in economy and elsewhere. Wanting to duplicate the exception, as a rule that is absurd and dangerous. It’s natural position, understand the success and failure factors, to seek progress, but each structure must discover, learn its own model, accept what it is without falling into passivity. Formidable trade and economic successes grow by own ways, original, irreproducible. There is no universal recipe.

Greece is not Germany, never will. Archos is not Apple, never will, Corner bar PMU is not the Cafe de Flore. Let us establish permanent calibrations who deny the diversity, culture and the intrinsic characteristics of our organizations. Copy and paste does not work and can even be dangerous. Ask me never to play every day and I will end Federer fail exhausted and probably depressed on the court.

It therefore seems inevitable and urgent to reflect on our behavior. Who sets the rules?Financiers, shareholders, citizens, employees, policies? These are lifestyle issues and wealth distribution that are also raised. Management must be at the service of man. Is that still the case today?

Antoine de Gramont

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