Who is Afraid of Management Gurus?
Patriarchy, dented and bruised, has had to rejig itself considerably
It is a truth universally acknowledged that nerdy management types graduating from the portals of Ivy League institutes are deserving of genuflections from us all! Their 'highfalutin' jargon wraps itself around our heads and we are gobsmacked by their weighty pronouncements.
After a lifetime of household management done without a fancy salary or fanfare, unlike the corporate whiz kids with fat wallets, some gutsy women finally reached a tipping point. One could hear the shattering sound of the shards falling from the glass ceiling as women took to the public space and still handled the home portfolio. Patriarchy, dented and bruised with this jagged shower, has had to rejig itself considerably.
Though even now, in many pockets of the world, toxicity raises its head by berating women for wearing revealing attire or not wearing attire mandated to keep the women in thrall. Sadly, women are being killed for asserting their agency! To dress as they please, stay at home or work outside or use the post-Covid convenience of work from home a.k.a WFH. It is regressive to behave as if we are still in the troglodyte phase of civilisation with man being the hunter-gatherer and the woman a stay-at-home caregiver.
Gone are the days when one was admonished with, 'remember who wears the pants?' This is no longer valid as genders are as fluid as clothes and hairstyles! Gen- X has sloughed off the old rigid beliefs fortunately.
Instead of being total acolytes of these fonts of wisdom, women's own strategising in public or home space is in a super league, worthy of emulation. My first quibble is with the word 'management' itself! Why not a gender neutral word ? There is a clutch of management maestros of modern times whose strategies are oracular in tone.
A scintillating galaxy of management Gurus, with stellar names like Peter Drucker, the Bhishma Pitamah of management thinking, C.Northcote Parkinson, CK Prahlad of the 'core competence' catchword , Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, the digital dragons. Nassim Taleb of 'The Black Swan Moment' fame, Warren Buffet, the Wizard of Omaha, and happily, also a clutch of women influencers shine on the marquee.
Many of these thought leaders become philanthropists after amassing fortunes that would please even the Croesus doppelgänger, Kuber. But women always believed that charity begins at home.
Randomly, take C.Northcote Parkinson's pithy management law: "Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion". He,obviously, was an armchair thinker who never encountered a hardworking housefrau. If he had, he would've modified his law to read 'Work expands endlessly so as to fill the shrinking time for its completion'.
Women have the soft skills of empathy, communication and networking in the real sense, learnt in the high voltage battleground called a household, with full deployment of the 3C's (command, control and communication). One would do well to learn from this multitasking human wonder called the housewife, and from women in general who have apparently a 'brahmastra' in that double X chromosome. Maybe a new formula is called for, where XX=XY!