If you haven’t seen Apollo 13 the movie . . . you should.  The famous line as the title of this post is still used often today.  After all, we had to find something to replace FUBAR and SNAFU from WWII.

Many of today’s problems in the business world can be attributed to management thinking.  Unions were started because management took advantage of the worker.  If greed didn’t prevail there never would have been a need to unionize.

As I read the Indianapolis Star today about the massive exporting of jobs in Indiana to Mexico, India and many other destinations.  We have outsourced ourselves in search of profit.  The government response  is worker retraining . . . nothing about management retraining that is really needed.

Along the path to prosperity we found the road to greed.  –Tripp Babbitt

The Star article cites even military products being made in foreign countries as profit-motivated and expense-driven companies seek to increase the former and decrease the latter.  Motivated by rewards and incentives we continue a massive spiral to less profit and more expenses.  It is a management paradox that the very thing pursued has the opposite outcome.

The blame game is something that executives have mastered . . . where what we need are leaders that can build value (too few of these types).  Why would the road to success be associated with the pursuit of self and not for the greater good?  Are we all really OK, if the American worker suffers?

We are embarking at another critical point in US history, this one is commerce related and military.  The fall of one will be the demise of the other.  Old Tayloristic management methods, technology, outsourcing and other ill-conceived thinking will surely seal our fate.

As displaced workers get retrained they are finding (and many cases not finding) jobs paying half the wage they had before.  This makes them eligible for entitlement programs that businesses abhor. 

If or when we discover that the management thinking being perpetuated is not profitable and indeed damaging . . . we may have a chance to be curious about better ways.  A better way of thinking exists and has been proven over the past 60 years.

Leave me a comment. . . share your opinion!  Click on comments below.

Tripp Babbitt is a speaker, blogger and consultant to service industry (private and public).  His organization helps executives find a better way to make the work work.  Download free from www.newsystemsthinking.com “Understanding Your Organization as a System” and gain knowledge of systems thinking or contact us about our intervention services at [email protected].  Reach him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/TriBabbitt or LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/trippbabbitt.