Monday, June 7, 2021

Hoping Bureaucratic Sclerosis Kills The Patient

Bureaucratic sclerosis was a prime cause of IBM's decline from ruling the computer tech universe to being a poor also ran. Sadly, I saw it from the inside ... quarter to quarter management precluding somewhat risky innovation projects, "cover your ass" being primary over "bust your ass" to innovate, analysis paralysis ... we had it all.  "Buy it vs build it" with the assumption that the guys who built it were replaceable or buyable. 

Maybe China is showing the same signs? 

"They're better at just reverse-engineering simpler components and building simpler things," Heath said. "All this requires a level of expertise and competence that SOEs just often are not very good at. You have to recognize the limitations of the SOEs in China when it comes to innovation."
SOE -- State Owned Enterprise. As organizations become larger, the tendency to become ponderous bureaucracies is strong to possibly inevitable. The same thing is happening to Western civilization, and the exceptions like Elon Musk are becoming more and more rare. Apple used to have "think different" as a motto, today it is more like "think how to keep our profits large". The organization doesn't have to be "state owned" to develop this disease -- just being PC, Woke, too convinced it was "management for managements sake" rather than deep tech wizardry that let to success, etc. can also kill the patient. 

The linked is an interesting discussion on how and why SOEs tend to fail when it gets to the really difficult stuff. 

"There are a few technologies that are really at the apex of technological manufacturing," and jet engines are one of them, Timothy Heath, a senior international and defense researcher at the Rand Corporation think tank, told Insider.

"These high-end technologies are so difficult to master that very few countries succeed. Many have failed," Heath added.

Here is hoping that bureaucracy kills SOEs faster than just "Woke" fascist states!


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