The Peter Principle – In Action

I came across a book review recently (nicely called Our Debt to the Plague on my iPad version of Businessweek) for a newly released book, Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty, by Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson.  Once I read about the “ignorance hypothesis” – the assumption that people in power would do right by their citizens if only they knew better – and that this “still rules supreme among most economists and in Western policy making circles,” I knew it had to be added to my (large) must read list. The authors’ thesis is that “nations fail because those who have power make choices that create poverty. They get it wrong not by mistake or ignorance but on purpose.” Sounds like Incompetent People Managers straight out of The Peter Principle practicing the First Commandment of Hierarchies, but I suspect that The Peter Principle: Why Things Always Go Wrong is not even referenced in the book’s bibliography. I will have to check on this and report later. In any case, it confirms my long-standing suspicions that The Peter Principle is more prevalent than thought, and extends well beyond the workplace.

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About Jim Edmonds

I am a husband, father, mentor, who once was a chemist turned physicist turned marketer turned executive turned missionary turned professor. And survived it all.
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