Tuesday, 25 November 2008

The Evolution of the Business Ostrich

The Evolution of the Business Ostrich
For those few who have managed to avoid or escape the business world, it is difficult to imagine the vastly different mind set. It is as far away from centre on the one side as academia is on the other, balanced by medicine in the north, and military in the south. Every one of these mind sets is verging on the lunatic, but those possessing the mindset are unable to recognise the phenomenon. Let's try to delve inside the business mindset. I take as my example Kentucky Fried Chicken, as they used to be called when they sold chicken, but now known as KFC. In my days of youth, I was asked to design a computer system to help with the administration of a KFC franchise. It was fascinating. We did a complete and detailed stock control system. Data was available to show how much oil was required to destroy one portion of fries. But the really amazing thing was the control of the stationery. Each portion of food sold was placed in a specific kind of container, so it was possible to make a reasonable assessment of portions sold by controlling the number of boxes used. Thus the status of the lowly box was raised above that of the food. I believe the results of this policy change are self-demonstrable. And yes, in order to control the use of ingredients, we did learn the secret recipe. I signed to say that I would never reveal it, but morally I think to do so should be considered an act of terrorism. OK Now that we are in the business mindset, we can see that the world revolves around money, profit, competition, performance reviews, peer reviews, salary reviews, and a whole pile of refuse. For those entrepreneurial types out there, here's a little secret. America has enormous secret reserves, held in dumpsters outside every supermarket. There is enough quality food there to give all the kids in Africa an absolutely mind blowing Christmas dinner, with a constant on-going daily supply of nourishing food. But not one person in the world can be arsed to arrange it. That is a measure of the reality of the business world. However, gradually, as the cherries begin to disappear from their Pymm's Number Threes, they feel a kick in the arse, and realise that they have had their head buried in the busines sand, and the great awakening begins.
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