Even the author mentioned that this is just one of the management-pattern, moreover his story is too idealized. Nonetheless, the idea is very interesting: who makes the decisions at a company?
The book is a classic fable which presents a full management methodology. The story begins with an explosion in the factory, what could have been prevented if the competent worker would have been authorized to switch the machine off before. Furthermore the bad mood is general at the company – until one of the directors finds the solution at his son’s basketball game. So the basics are great in the book and the sport metaphor is very effective as well.
When the director finds the solution, he introduces the methodology immediately at the company, and after that resolves problems one after another. The answers are good, however, it’s just a tale, the company and the colleagues are idealized, for example everybody accepts the methodology instantly, everybody gets the feeling and the new way brings business success from the first day.
Is there any circumstances what changes the behavior of the methodology in the reality? I think there is one: time. OK, I don’t have too many high-level leader experiences, but I don’t think it is realistic that all managers have weeks to make every decision while the assigned colleague comes back with the decision. The problem with time is absolutely missing from the book.
Another, maybe more interesting point is that to delegate decisions leaders have to limit their power. The author basically assumes that managers are ready for this, however, I’m not sure that this decision would be so easy for all of them…
But as the prologue and epilogue states, this is a tested and active methodology, one that seems revolutionary and effective enough to be worthy to think about.
Dennis Bakke: The decision maker
Pear Press, 2013.