Back in the old days of rock’n’roll you got into the music business by getting as stoned as possible and following a band around until they finally accepted your presence and gave you something to do. Now things are different. It’s an industry run by (mostly) clear-headed businesspeople and has a set of well-defined job descriptions. There are even pensions, for Led Zeppelin’s sake.
Science fiction authors imagined artificial intelligence (AI) using its superior computing power to conquer humanity. Lucky for us, that hasn’t come to pass (yet!). Instead, what we have is so much better: helpful AI capable of automating many key tasks involved in running your business.
The recent US college admissions scandal hit the news largely because a few celebrities were involved, but this kind of thing must be going on all the time. To recap the scandal:
The FBI says pushy parents paid $25m in bribes to get university places for their children.
Actress Lori Loughlin is alleged to have paid $500,000 for college places for her two daughters, in a deal which also got them on to the University of Southern California rowing team.
Management trainers often tread a fine line between academia and practical reality. If they have studied management at university, it’s all too tempting to dazzle their students with clever-sounding terms. But being dazzled is the last thing budding managers need as they seek to perform better and advance their careers. Many would rather point their telescopes away from the sun and see the path ahead clearly.
A family business can be anything from a single mom-and-pop store to a global corporation like Red Bull, BMW or Mittal Steel. What marks them out from other businesses is the family dynamics going on within the company and in the boardroom, which can sometimes lead to quirky management styles and unique cultures and procedures. All this is very old-school, but today’s family-run companies include some of the most innovative and successful business around. Wal-Mart, anyone? Ford? Toyota? The Tata Group? Samsung? All multi-generational family-run businesses.