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Reflection – Cen (Mia) Zhao

by on November 28, 2007

Reflection about Jules Case

In one of our classes, we talked about case of unpredictability. Jules, once the CEO of a large manufacturing and distribution company, was fired ultimately because he controlled too much during board meeting. After discussion, most students think it is board members’ responsibility to do their homework and to get prepared for the meeting agenda. Theoretically, it is a wired situation that cannot be fully understood by us. What’s wrong with preparing and organizing everything well?

This situation remind me a sentence: The only drawback of him/her is he/she is too perfect. So here, I would like to say that the only problem with Jules, which is also the fatal one, is he is too competent. He set everything up before the board meeting and made sure that there would not be any problem with the proposals. If I were the board member who has been working with Jules for ten years, I would do nothing about such situation. I would feel so glad to just sit there and let him worry about everything. However, if Jules just got his position and never worked with me before, things would become totally different. Think about if I met with a boy who performed everything so perfectly during the dating. I would think this guy must hide something bad that I didn’t know.

People have assumption that most human beings are imperfect. According to this assumption, if one person performed perfectly, I would have two kinds of thoughts. One is this person is not as perfect as it seems to be. The other is this person is not normal human being. If I had the first thought, I would not choose to fully trust this person because I haven’t known enough about him/her. If I had second thought, I might trust this person but I would never make friends with him/her because getting along with this type of person would make me feel stressed and depressed. No matter which thought I had, they were all negative.

Let’s back to this case. If I were the CEO, I would make one or two small mistakes purposely in the board meeting and let at least some of board members disagree with me. In that way, they would have something to discuss. Then, they would get satisfied after at least part of their opinions were adopted. Certainly, it would waste contain amount of time on the meeting. But from the long perspective, it saved a lot of time for board members to complain about powerlessness and for CEO to handle with such situation.

I would like to use the example of playing poker here. If you always won money when playing poker with your friends, in the end, on one would like to play with you again. At that time, you could win nothing. But if you lose money purposefully at some times and let others believe that they do have a chance to win, you could play it all the time. So in order to win the money in a long time, be sure the let people keep uncertainties.

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