Hilton’s a brander – a generaliser – someone who thinks about the veneer but knows little about the substance.
For example, businesses cannot sack the lunatics, the idlers, the incompetents, the troublemakers any more – thanks to social regulation. Many employers are using the opposite technique of sacking themselves to escape the horrific prospect of being saddled with such folk.
If you sack such folk, they can spend years suing you and negotiating nice payoffs. Few people want to live like that. There are more and more people like Hilton who leave the core of real organisations that have to deal with such issues, and go out and preach.
It doesn’t solve the main problem – that business is so circumscribed with laws and regulatioin now that people are giving up running them. That’s why unemployment is rising….big business create no net jobs by the way. Only small companies actually create jobs.
Business is already totally overburdened with red tape, and it gets worse by the day. Unless that is dealt with, the aspirations of Built To Last – that business people will assume more responsibility and become enterprising is doomed to failure.
Of course if people do want to run businesses successfully, and take on the burdens of society once more, the effect of modern media is such that firms are inevitably becoming more aware of current issues and fashions of the kind mentioned. But to be honest, the traffic is all the other way now. Business people are getting sick and tired of the way society works, and they couldn’t really give a fig about assuming more load and joining in with some sunny preacher’s nice little ideas.
Ascribing old fashioned compartmentalism to the ‘Old Right’ is nuts. All people from all classes and political beliefs lived compartmentalisied lives then.
Work was far more boring in those days pre – communication technology. When 5 o clock came, you shut the factory door and went home and started to live. Now work can be more interesting with the drudgery removed, combined with instant connection to the marketplace.
I am sure Hilton is a good brander, but he does not express the desperation of business people and the urgent political needs of business. The paintwork will be done well by Hilton, but the engine of business is labouring heavily and needs major servicing – or it will stall. He can only keep his light laid back approach to business by ignoring that reality, and it makes him a weak force where a strong one is required.
If he wants his ideas to be Built To Last, he must address the current grim reality of excessive regulation. Or the only social leadership provided by business will be a lengthening unemployment queue.