Book Review: My 50 years in Dayton by Stanley C. Allyn
You probably won’t find this in Google search, I didn’t. It is in booklet form, not perfect bound, and is only 31 pages long, but the business advice from it is timeless. I think the Carillon Park book store still has copies. It is My First 50 years in Dayton by Stanley C. Allyn (former CEO of NCR corporation).
In chapter 4 Mr. Allyn gives his 4 big jobs for management teams (These ideas were written in 1963! They are timeless and far seeing):
1) See to it that the company makes a satisfactory profit.
2) Keep the company’s products up to date, whether they are material goods or services.
3) Earn the enthusiastic support of all employees.
4) Make certain that the company is good citizen of the community in which it operates.
Point one is very obvious, a company that can not make a satisfactory profit will not last, and Mr. Allyn states that managers do not have to be defensive about this goal. Frankly, at the end of things, if the company can not make a profit then all members of the company are looking for new work!
Point two is also almost taken for granted and it is given lip service in about every company that is in existence, but far seeing companies never taken this for granted they change and evolve over time, no matter what their form of business endeavor.
Point three is rarely found is today’s business, frankly I have had more than one manager tell me “who cares what the front line employee thinks. If I can get buy off from other managers, so be it, they have to keep their employees in line not me.” Companies that regard their employees this way are doomed to fail. Here is a bit of my own advice, call if prophecy if you wish: “America will not return to economic greatness without 2 important components of American business: One, America will not return to economic prominence as long as its businesses employ in its labor force: temporaries, short term hires, casual hires (throw away employees) and contractors. I will address this more in my next article.
The second is that America needs another technological innovation like the internet or personnel computer.
Point four, doesn’t BP wish they had followed this advice? How many American companies wish they had followed this advice (they are legion!)?
In all, if you are a small to medium business owner spend the $4.00 and 30 minutes of your valuable time and buy the book. It is an interesting read and the business advice is wonderful from a guy that definitely succeeded!
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