Sunday, May 20, 2007

Business Lessons From 1954

Last summer I found a book at a garage sale entitled "Industries In Racine". It was written in 1954 by Alice Sankey, a public school teacher in Racine. The book was written for Racine's public school children.

One chapter, called Our Best Resources, focuses on manpower. The author cites a comparitive study of Racine's industrial output relative to other cities its size. The study concluded that "the quality of management shares with labor the credit for the high product-value rating (of Racine businesses), because the contribution of each is not seperable." Sankey continues "In other words, the skilled worker alone cannot make a success of an industry. Planners or leaders are needed to figure out the business end of the work, how to handle the money invested, spent, and taken in, and how to build up the business and make it grow and prosper."

The book provides a balanced look at the contributions of workers, management as well as lenders. This is important stuff for children to learn. I wonder what lessons are being taught about business today in our public schools. My guess is that their is a bias in favor of the worker and against management, owners and lenders.


Paul H. said...

Sorry, but gotta call you on that, Denis. If you've ever been exposed to Junior Achievement (I'm a volunteer instructor for a 6th grade class), you'd know that the curriculum provides an excellent overview of the U.S. free enterprise system.

In fact, JA can always use volunteers as there are far more available RUSD classes than instructors.

Denis Navratil said...

Thanks paul h. Can you tell me more about this program at RUSD? Is JA a course taught at Unified or is it an extracurricular activity? And why is it taught by volunteers and not RUSD teachers? You could call me if you like or post info here. I am very interested.

Paul H. said...

Here's the phone # for the Racine Junior Achievement program: 638-4338. I'm sure they'd be happy to fill you in,