Byron's Babbles

Spirit of Performance

  Drucker believed that the spirit of performance in an organization is led by leaders who are committed to getting the right things done (effectiveness) and doing the right things (efficiency) (Maciariello, 2014). These leaders must posses integrity of character, a vision for the organization, and focus. They must also be able to lead change. Drucker called those who could lead change agents “disturbing elements” (Maciariello, 2014). A disturbing element in an organization is a leader who seeks to change its culture and practices to prevent bureaucratic behavior from settling in. These leaders bring energy and spirit to the organization.

Drucker also believed that the purpose of an organization is to “make common men do uncommon things” (Maciariello, 2014). We all hire from the same pool of common people. Face it, we are all just common people. Why do some achieve greatness in the companies, organizations, and schools they work for? Because there has been at least one leader in that institution who prodded people to develop, improve, innovate, and sustain the spirit of performance. Organizations must see being entrepreneurial and innovative as a duty. As such, organizations must develop their people to be entrepreneurial and innovative. This ca be accomplished with “conscience” activities. Those activities that remind the organization what it should be doing and what it isn’t doing. 


 Those leaders who provide the sustaining spirit for an organization are forever watchful for bureaucratic tendencies allowing people to drift into repetitive routines and lose focus on primary results. I was really reminded in this week’s lesson, how much all of this really deals with people. It deals with hiring the right people and then providing the right opportunities and a culture of performance. Furthermore, it is important to remember that decisions that affect people, their placement and pay, promotion, demotion, and severance, must represent the values and core beliefs of the organization. As businesses, organizations, and schools, innovate and evolve there will be people who are just not the right fit. This poor fit may be because of skill level, personality or any number of things. Drucker teaches us this is natural. We must work to make conscience decisions about how to get them the professional development they need, help them understand the gap in fit, or come to an understanding together that it is just not in the best interest of either party to continue. I liked the suggestion by Maciariello (2014) that we should always ask the question, “What can they do?” Many times there are adjustments that can be made.

Are you providing the spirit of performance in your organization?


Maciariello, J. A. (2014). A year with Peter Drucker: 52 weeks of coaching for leadership effectiveness. New York, NY: HarperCollins Publishers. 

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