Taking Care of Business

We at the Drucker Exchange don’t like to offer un-researched facts or figures, but we are pretty sure that Andrew Mason, ousted earlier this year from Groupon, the business he founded, is the first ex-CEO in history to make a rock album of “motivational business music.” Reviews have not been uniformly positive.

But critics are ungenerous. We admire Mason for his pluck, and, to do our part to forward a young man’s recording career, we’d like to marry the insights of Peter Drucker to the insights put forward in Mason’s album, “Hardly Workin’.”

What follow are five passages of Mason’s lyrics, each followed by a Drucker quote capturing the same sentiment.

Mason1. On Complexity

Mason sings:

The best things in life
Are clear without instructions
If you gotta explain it
Your plan needs reduction
From the song “K.I.S.S.

Drucker writes:

If it is not simple, it won’t work. — Innovation and Entrepreneurship

2. On the limits of school

Mason sings:

If you’re seeking business wisdom
You don’t need no MBA
Look no further than the beauty
That surrounds us every day
From the song “Look No Further

Drucker says:

“Education gives you neither experience nor wisdom.” — Interview with Inc.

3. On Communication

Mason sings:

I know you feel small
Like one of a million
And like maybe
I’ve heard it before
How do you think
I learn what’s going on?
Yeah I need you
To come to me when something’s
Wrong, son
From the song “My Door Is Always Open

Drucker writes:

Communication has to be upward if it is to work at all. — Frontiers of Management

4. On Top Performance

Mason sings:

Make sure the terms for success
Are clearly defined
Know what’s expected and exceed it
From the song “Risin’ Above The Pack

Drucker writes:

To make the right decision the knowledge worker must know what performance and results are needed. —Managing For Results

5. On Stretching

Mason sings:

Measurable and controllable
You heard that all before
Now take the numbers
You can hit for sure
And add a little more
From the song “Stretch

Drucker writes:

One needs productivity goals—and ambitious ones. — Managing the Nonprofit Organization

What’s your favorite work-related song, and why?