Management Pioneer Peter Drucker 1909 – 2005

Management expert Peter Drucker passed away at age 95. See: Peter F. Drucker Information from Claremount University and our previous post.

Here we list links to some of his work.

There is an excellent podcast of an interview with him on NPR (Peter Drucker – podcast interview) on management, the state of the world today and where we are headed. A profound view from Peter Drucker in his 95th year.

His revised edition of the Effective Executive is due out in January.

Post-Capitalist interview with Peter Drucker in Wired, 1993 (Post-Capitalist Society book by Peter Drucker):

International economic theory is obsolete. The traditional factors of production – land, labor, and capital – are becoming restraints rather than driving forces. Knowledge is becoming the one critical factor of production. It has two incarnations: Knowledge applied to existing processes, services, and products is productivity; knowledge applied to the new is innovation.

When you look at it that way, the last 40 years of economic history begins to make some sense.


Civilizing the City, Peter F. Drucker, 1998:

The 20th century, now coming to an end, has seen an explosive growth of both government and business — especially in the developed countries. What the dawning 21st century needs above all is equally explosive growth of the nonprofit social sector in building communities in the newly dominant social environment, the city.

The Shape of Things to Come, Peter Drucker 1996:

The present people in organizations are still stuck in the 19th-century model of the organization. When big business first emerged throughout the industrial world around 1870, it did not emerge out of the small businesses of 1850 — it emerged independently. The only model available, the most successful organization of the 19th century, was the Prussian Army…

The Prussians succeeded because they had created an organization. They were the first ones to use modern technology effectively, which in those days meant railroad and telegraph. Business copied the command and control structure of the Prussian army, in which rank equaled authority. We are now evolving toward structures in which rank means responsibility but not authority. And in which your job is not to command but to persuade.

Managing Knowledge Means Managing Oneself by Peter Drucker:

Every time you do something that is important, write down what you expect will happen. The most important decisions in organizations are people decisions, and yet only the military, and only recently, has begun to ask, “If we assign this general to lead this base, what do we expect him to accomplish?” Three years later they look back at what they had written. They have now reached a point where 40 percent of their decisions work out.

Peter Drucker: Mr. Management, Mike J. Brewster, Business Week, 2004.

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