[Jokes] sound familiar?

McKenna, Chris (RDSSW) chris.mckenna at defra.gsi.gov.uk
Sat Nov 23 16:31:20 GMT 2002

A Japanese company and an American company decided to
have a canoe race on the Missouri River. Both the
teams practiced hard and long to reach their peak
performance before the race.
On the big day the Japanese won by a mile.
Afterward, the American team became very discouraged
and morally depressed.
The American management decided the reason for the
crushing defeat had to be found. A "Management Team"
made up of senior management was formed to
investigate and recommend appropriate action. Their
conclusion was the Japanese had 8 people rowing and 1
person steering, while the American team had 8 people
steering and one person rowing. So American
management hired a consulting company and paid them an
incredible amount of money. They advised that too
many people were steering the boat, while not enough
people were rowing.
To prevent losing to the Japanese again next year, the
rowing team's management structure was totally
reorganised to 4 steering supervisors, 3
area steering superintendents and 1 assistant
superintendent steering manager. They also
implemented a new performance system that would give
the 1 person rowing the boat greater incentive to work
harder. It was called the "Rowing Team Quality First
Program," with meetings, dinners and free pens for the rower.
"We must give the rower the empowerment and
enrichments through this quality program.".
The next year the Japanese won by two miles.
Humiliated, the American management laid off the rower
for poor performance, halted development of a new
canoe, sold the paddles, and cancelled all
capital investments for new equipment. Then they
distributed the money saved as bonuses to the senior

Thank goodness this is just a story and this sort of
thing doesn't happen in real life eh?

Chris McKenna
chris.mckenna at defra.gsi.gov.uk
cmckenna at sucs.org

"The best thing about democracy, 
is that you can speak ill of it"

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