Institute for Simplicity

Consulting Based on the Principles of Simplicity

Ploughhorses or Showhorses

Artikel vom 07.08.2011

It was always an important rule for ALDI to omit any Public Relation. At ALDI, managers preferred to work quietly in their offices almost secretly and think how to improve their business. The results are obvious: customers enjoy buying at ALDI, excellent sales and profits, many innovations like multiple barcodes on the packaging which you would normally expect from IT experts. Instead, they are developed by ALDI.

Jum Collins, a well known American researcher on Management, studied what makes managers successful in the long run. Not only did he find that bonuses do not help. (Can you imagine that you need a bonus to wake up an already well paid Executive to go to the office?) Jim Collins also came to the conclusion that “ploughhorses” are more effective executives than “showhorses”. The latter spend more time in public, go to TV shows, and speak at congresses which only helps their competitors as there are rarely any customers.

“Ploughhorses” are hard working executives who do not care so much about their personal reputation. They do not want to become famous. Their company should become famous. They concentrate on honest work and results. They focus on the essentials. These hard working managers are more successful in the long run.