Peter F. Drucker in his life has been a big influence in management world. His work as consultant and writer has put foundation on modern management we knew right now. As a writer, Drucker is also one of the biggest and also the best contributor of Harvard Business Review, whose purpose is to enhance the practice of management and its impact to the world according to Tim Stewart, with 38 articles for more than half a century. 15 articles of that published works are in this book which then separated into two parts, “Responsibilities of Managers” and “Executive World”.
In this book you can see how management changed as time goes by. In his 95 years of life, Drucker did experience many things, two world wars, the era of baby boomers, great depression, innovation of computers, beginning of globalization era, the rise and fall of many big companies, etc can be seen in this book. One of the most interesting topic is how he talked about how computers changed the way management worked and how practitioner adapted to it. It’s really interesting, like seeing history in the perspective of management expert.
The great thing about this book is even when the article was published so long ago in the past, the idea that Drucker talked about is still applicable even until now. The idea about making decision, asking right question, outsourcing, adapting with the advancing technology, and changes in society and market are still things that we are talking about. Just like what Tom Stewart said in introduction, the ideas Drucker told are timeless and people can still learn from an article written before their parents were born.
This book is great and all but I think it’s more suitable to people who are already practitioners of management. I as a mere student majoring in agribusiness honestly have a hard time understanding this book, especially in the second part where Drucker talked about executives. However, I think for people who are managing organizations, big or small, profit-oriented or non-profit oriented, this book contained many general ideas that’s applicable. I might be able to use only fragments of the ideas told in this book in my debating organization but someday I have a feeling that this book will be even more useful for me.