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Tuesday, May 11, 2021
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A cowboy culture

How are we to deal with businessmen who won’t play fair? There are three responses, and the one most under-rated is to regulate by a system of values.

Corporate Governance (with Aubrey Silberston)

The issue has existed for as long as there have been social institutions; yet two decades ago, the term ‘corporate governance’ had not been coined.

Of fortunes and foresight

Will the dominant firms of the next century be the ones that show foresight and react quickly? Many of the best companies work simply by doing traditional business very, very well.

Business lessons from the sporting world

Sport is a better metaphor for business than most: which makes the tawdry spectacle of Atlanta 1996 all the more depressing.


There is more to auctions than meets the eye. If you are going to design markets, make sure you understand how they work.

Why piece work went out of fashion

Piece rates are out of fashion but incentive contracts for top executives are in. Perhaps we will soon discover that the problems caused by piece rates also dog share option schemes.

Price wars

Identifiable objectives, depths of resources and strength of commitment are the keys to success in a price war. Don’t launch one if you don’t have them.

Globalisation of the skies

Many firms have aspirations to “go global”, but this unanimity disguises both differences and confusion.

Clear thinking muddied by competitiveness

We would do better to stop talking about competitiveness. It seems only to get in the way of clear thinking.

A euphemism that is going out of fashion

How is it that so many companies have found it possible to slash their work forces? What is behind the fad of “downsizing”?