These days practically every city in the world has a School or Institute of Management and if you want a goodstart to an executive career, then get yourself an MBA degree and become a Master of Business Administration.
Management has always been the invisible ingredient of success. The pyramids of Egypt and theGreat Wall of China could not have been built without good management systems. Good ideas are wasted unless someone turns them into a workable activity or business, by management.
But the art ofmanagement still seems very elusive. Unlike the physical sciences, in management there seem to be no absolute laws. As new technologies arrive and people find new needs, managers have to adapt andexperiment to stay in business.
That's where the gurus come in. Their role is to interpret and spread around what seems to be working, helping managers to cope in a world that changes fast.
Significantgurus often use common sense, but they see the sense before it becomes common and that's what can give companies and their managers the competitive edge. The insights and methods of the gurus can make abig difference to the way we manage our organizations.
In 1974 I made the earliest attempt to describe the different cultures or types of organizations. Every organization, I felt, is a differentmix of the same four basic cultures which I represented with names of Greek Gods:
* Zeus Culture, after the powerful head of the gods, an organization dominated by the personality and power of oneperson, often the founder or owner.
* Apollo Culture, after the God of harmony and order, dominated by rules and procedures.
* Athena Culture, after the warrior goddess, the symbol of theproject organization, the culture that dominates consultancies, advertising agencies and, increasingly, all innovative businesses.
* Dionysius Culture, in which the individual has the freedom to...