Tuesday, 10 May 2011

16 ways of dealing with a dead horse

The tribal wisdom of the Dakota Indians, passed on from generation to generation, says that, “When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount: get off the horse.” 

However, modern management thinking has identified a range of alternative strategies for dealing with the problem of a dead horse:  

  1. Change riders.
  2. Reclassify the dead horse as a paradigm shift and keep riding it. 
  3. Buy a stronger whip and flog the horse until it shows signs of life. 
  4. Do nothing: "This is the way we have always ridden dead horses".
  5. Develop a Strategic Plan for the management of dead horses. 
  6. Arrange an international programme visit to see how they ride dead horses in other countries.
  7. Perform a productivity study to see if lighter riders improve the dead horse's performance.
  8. Hire outside consultants to ride the dead horse.
  9. Harness several dead horses together in an attempt to increase the speed.
  10. Provide additional funding for external training that will increase the dead horse’s performance. 
  11. Appoint a committee to study the horse and assess how dead it actually is. 
  12. Rewrite the horse’s job description in line with the new Competency Framework Guidelines for Deceased Equine Models.
  13. Re-classify the dead horse as suffering from "Vital Life-Sign Indetectability Syndrome".
  14. Promote the dead horse to a management position.
  15. Declare that, as the dead horse does not have to be fed, it is less costly, carries lower overheads, and therefore contributes substantially more to the bottom line than many other horses.
  16. Contact IT to see if the whole stable is down, or just your horse. 
I cannot claim for one moment that any of this is original, so thanks to a colleague for sharing a variation on this theme

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