Thursday, November 8, 2012

Smart or Dull, Industrious or Lazy?

Someday I met my friends in a bar. We talked about organization.
One of them told me that, we had to categorize the employee into 4 types with 2 factors, smart/dull and industrious/lazy.

Who is the best?
1. smart and industrious person
2. smart and lazy person
3. dull and industrious person
4. dull and lazy person

This kind of story is often told as a method for good organization or self-developing. Of course I had already known.
For example, Mr. Hironao Ashida, past a principal of Tokyo Vocational School of Industry, made a speech for the graduates in 2005 about this issue.
(Summary of the Speech by Mr. Ashida: in Japanese)

He said in the speech that you should not be a person of effort. Because, persons makes effort greatly tend to compensate the low quality or ineffectiveness of the work for more effort. So they should abandon the effort and change their mind.
According to him, dull and industrious person is the last one to be hired with welcome.

Well, how to manage them? Consider each type of person.

My opinion is that, smart and industrious person is suitable to high-class business. They are also easy to manage as colleagues. However smart and lazy person is hardly to be handled in Japanese organization. In Japan there is strong trend to admire effort. Lazy persons are discriminated. And they do not like to work under controlled by other people. So they sometimes establish their own business.

My friend had other opinion. He claimed that the person who is smart and industrious is to become the boss. And smart and lazy persons are to command the dull and industrious persons under the control of the boss. He guessed that smart and lazy persons would respect the person who is smart and industrious, so the organization could work well.

Is it true or false?
Anyway to be smart is the point. Effort cannot overcome the deficit.

1 comment:

  1. This is famous idea!! The original one is from Kurt von Hammerstein-Equord, German general in WW2. See this webpage:
    In Japan, many people believe that is a idea from Johannes Friedrich Leopold von Seeckt, which is wrong. The following webpage is a Japanese one:

    ..Apart from this, I think similar problems happen in baseball quite often. A smart and industrious person sometimes becames a very good player, however, sometimes it will be big disaster if he becomes manager. Shigeo Nagashima, Atsuya Furuta..etc. One of the biggest reasons of this problem is, I think, because "managing someone" requires another talent, as Peter Drucker said. The smart and industrious person is very good as a player, but if he starts to behave as a boss, he must bahave in different manner.

    Another problem about it is character of this person. The smart and industrious person often has a "competitive (aggressive?)" character, which is bad character for boss. Boss must not compete with staffs, as he must observe staffs calmly and must think about managing.. The smart and lazy person sometimes behaves quite good in this aspect, as he does not want to compete with staffs...(If he is really competitive, he has already became a smart and industrious person!!)

    I think this is old, but also new problem.. To saying something about management is easy, but when we must manage someone, we must struggle a lot.