Peter Drucker is renowned as the creator of management as a discipline in its own right. He was born in 1909 in Vienna, and was educated both there and in England before emigrating to the USA in 1937. When he became Professor of Management at New York University in 1950, he was, in his own words, ‘the first person anywhere in the world to have such a title and to teach such a subject’. Drucker’s ground-breaking management book about General Motors, Concept of the Corporation, was published in 1946. In it, he asserted that management was not a rank or a title, but a responsibility and a practice – a discipline that can be taught and must be studied, just like other disciplines. Drucker is a prolific writer who has coined new phrases and introduced new concepts that have become firmly established as facts of management life. His two famous books, The Practice of Management (1954) and Management Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices (1973), describe his philosophy and approach to management and are also textbooks that teach the reader how to manage. His five basic principles of management are:
1. setting objectives
3. motivating and communicating
4. establishing measurements of performance, and
5. developing people.
Despite advancing years Drucker has continued to contribute fresh ideas, publishing Management Challenges for the 21st Century in 1999. He has the guru’s knack of presenting concepts and ideas clearly and persuasively to his audience, and is eminently quotable.The best way to predict the future is to create it.A manager is responsible for the application and performance of knowledge. The most important contribution management needs to make in the 21st century is … to increase the productivity of knowledge work and the knowledge worker.