Getting the Minimums right

Peter Drucker made this comment long ago(On the Profession of Management, The Theory of the Business)

The root cause of (many business crises)  is not that things are being done poorly. It is not even that the wrong things are being done.  Indeed, in most cases, the right things are being done – but fruitlessly. What accounts for this apparent paradox? The assumptions on which the organization has been built and is being run no longer fit reality.

When this happens, it is no longer possible to consistently assess what is a meaningful result.  Put another way, it becomes impossible to judge what is the minimum necessary in a given situation. When that happens, the organization over- invests in certain things and under-invests in others. It burns up capital rather than efficiently deploy it.

Understanding this is a predicate for understanding what strategic thinking is all about. That we need do no more than the minimum required to win in a given situation. We dare do no more or we exhaust ourselves.


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