Whether Drucker really coined the phrase “Culture eats strategy” or not, the bros running Uber seem hell-bent to prove it out. It’s been reported that the leading lights of Silicon Valley keep those little light bulbs over their heads burning bright with micro-doses of LSD and magic mushrooms. The boys at Uber seem to have been macro-dosing some reagent that kills empathy and renders one tone deaf to the arc of business karma.
In a business soap opera with many sad moments, one of the saddest is that it didn’t have to be this way. Not to argue posthumously with Mr. Drucker, but culture does not have to be some rampant beast, red of tooth and claw, with the limp carcass of our business dreams dangling from its bloody jaws. That is not to suggest culture is some purring lap cat, content to wait in some warm sunbeam until we deign to turn our attention to it. Ignore culture at your own risk. It likes attention and failure to offer enough attention is a quick path to unexpected (and usually undesirable) side effects. Continue reading