PETER F. DRUCKER : A MANAGEMENT VISIONARY (Nov. 19, 1909 - Nov. 11, 2005)
- Prof. Navin Mathur
Peter Ferdinand Drucker, hailed as the father of modern management, had a young mind until his death a week ago. Durcker, the world’s most influential managemnt guru, continued to write and consult right into his nineties. It was he who turned management theory into a serious discipline and transformed corporate management in the latter half of the twentieth century.

Drucker, born in Vienna (Austria) in 1909, originally belonged to a Dutch family. After getting his education in Austria and England, LLD from University of Frankfurt, he sailed for USA in 1937 and became its naturalized citizen in 1948. While his writings and prescriptions on management have greatly influenced managers of American corporations, the impact of his ideas everywhere in the world was significant. Drucker had been since 1971 Clarke Professor of Social Science and Management at Claremont Graduate School.

Drucker wrote over three dozen books, the first in 1939 - The End of Economic Man. His other outstanding books are The Practice of Management (1954), Management: Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices (1974), The Frontiers of Management (1987). Managing in a Time of Great Change (1995), Peter Drucker on the Profession of Management (1998), and Management Challenges for the 21st Century (1999) are his recent books. Managing in the Next Society is Drucker’s latest collection of articles on society and management.
While Drucker wrote on almost every discipline, he got wide recognition and fame in the corporate world and academics for his contribution to management thought. He underlined the importance of management for business, and the society at large. However, he felt sorry to note that despite its crucial importance, its high visibility and its spectacular rise, management is least known and least understood.

Drucker repeatedly preached a philosophy of management, that of management by objectives and self-control. He pleaded for creative management in place of bureaucratic management. He said that managers should go beyond decentralization, and designed principles of taskforce team, simulated decentralization and the systems organization. He strongly said that managers should go beyond personnel management and they should learn to lead people rather than to contain them. He also pointed out that the innova¬tive organization—the organization that resists stagnation rather than change—is a major challenge to management. More and more organizations which are innovative and productive for society, economy and the individual should come up.

Drucker has made several predictions for events unfolding until about 2010. Some of them are noted below:
1.In the emerging ‘Network Society’, there will be a rise in alliances, partnerships, and joint ventures on a global scale which will be linked by technology.
2.There will be a compelling need for decentralized organizations in an increasingly uncertain environment.
3.The evolution of ‘knowledge societies’ in developed countries having three sectors—business, government and non-profit.
4.Greater use of teams in organizations.
5.Increase in the number of knowledge workers and decline in the number of blue-collar and agricultural workers.
6.World markets will become more important than domestic markets in the world economy.

Modern world is a world Drucker foresaw, defined, and helped to create. He is one of the few thinkers in any discipline who can claim to have changed the world. He is the inventor of privatization, the apostle of a new class of knowledge workers, the champion of management as a serious discipline. He has been called everything from the Father of Management to the man who changed the face of industrial America, to the one great thinker management theory has produced.

Drucker has walked with many of the 20th century’s visionaries including John L. Lewis, Alfred Sloan, Thomas Watson, Henry Luce, Marshall McLuhan and Buckminster Fuller. His work has influenced Winston Churchill, Bill Gates, Jack Welch and the Japanese business establishment.

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