Thursday, August 02, 2007

Quotation of the day

"I divide my officers into four classes; the clever, the lazy, the industrious, and the stupid. Each officer possesses at least two of these qualities. Those who are clever and industrious are fitted for the highest staff appointments. Use can be made of those who are stupid and lazy. The man who is clever and lazy however is for the very highest command; he has the temperament and nerves to deal with all situations. But whoever is stupid and industrious is a menace and must be removed immediately!" [emphasis added]

Kurt von Hammerstein-Equord


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  3. Finally! Some positive reinforcement for my clever and lazy ways : )

  4. Ashi: Likewise :)

    As an executive, I'd like to hear more about the uses one can make of the stupid and lazy.

  5. "As an executive, I'd like to hear more about the uses one can make of the stupid and lazy."

    They should be in customer service; provided the company in question is publicly traded and you've sold it short.

    I'll agree with the quote that the stupid and industrious are, indeed, a menace in a military setting. In the context of a business or religious organization, however, they're the best of worker bees, as long as you've got suitable middle (micro) managers available.

  6. I think v H-E is talking specifically about the officer corps; stupid and industrious seems a positive, or at least tolerable, quality for both the soldiery as well as rank-and-file workers.

  7. Stupid & Lazy = Interns that google all day long, and the people who they grow up to be - forever on the 30k salary wondering why their education didn't pay out more.

  8. Industrious and Stupid are no good at ANY level of ANY organization, because their very industriousness (applied stupidly) UNDOES and OBSTRUCTS the useful work of others.

    Stupid and lazy people are, however, useful for menial and interrupt-driven tasks - such as answering phones (when they ring), filing stuff (when asked), standing watches (when told) and generally providing a butt when one is needed to occupy a chair somewhere...

    The lazy bit is useful because they do ONLY what they're told to do... Sometimes that's a good thing.

  9. It does have to be said, however, that in modern organizations, the tasks that were once best assigned to stupid and lazy are ALSO the tasks best supplanted by technology.

    Answering/Directing calls?
    (Voicemail and "press 1 to...")
    Moving messages around?
    Adding boring stacks of numbers?
    Counting materials/supplies
    (automated inventory control)

    Is because computers and machines are exactly the same kind of lazy + stupid... And they're cheaper...


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