Joseph Lee's Perspectives
My view of the world
July 8, 2008 -- Games of No Chance

                If you thought that the chances of winning the big prize on a lottery was bad, wait till you hear this (CNN).   Over 20 states sell lottery tickets to which buyers have zero chance of winning the big prize.   That’s because the prize had already been awarded.   This can happen whenever the top prize of pre-printed scratchers is awarded, but the batch of tickets continue to be sold, even   month after the top prize is awarded.


                State officials claim this is legal because buyers of tickets still have a chance to win the “other” prizes.


                It seems that is a fairly routine excuse these days for businesses or governments, whether local or federal, when something doesn’t sound right.   “What we did was legal,” the officials or company spokespersons would say.


                What a low standard of performance that is.  The mortgage mess is now going to be debated in the court of law where those duped into signing loans for which they had no chance of repaying will try to get reprieve.   The banks’ argument will of course be, “there was nothing illegal about those loans.”


                A cursory review of financial statements, 10K filings, and other publicly disclosed financial data of corporations would make lead you to believe that it requires not only a CPA, but also a law degree to understand the disclaimers involved.  Once again the standard is, “what we’re doing is legal.”


                Peter Drucker once famously said, “Management is doing things right; Leadership is doing the right things.”  (I should know, I teach at the school named after him)


                It is surprising that with the multi-million dollar investments being made in training programs, that for so many who rise to the top, they lack the one thing that is required of them—leadership.


 

2008-07-08 09:14:43 GMT
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