CP Scott’s centenary essay: A Hundred Years, is timeless, powerful, compelling, seductively liberating mentally; or at least, seductively calls and challenges one to seek for mental liberation. It offers valuable lessons on business and organisation management. And above all, it stresses on the importance of character, for instance, how self-respecting individuals in any organisation, irrespective of their station, ought to comport themselves.
Beyond its apparent critical concern on running a newspaper and how to do independent journalism; it’s cross-sectional in terms of its immense relevance to and lessons on business and organisational management. It must be required reading in business courses (studies) and business schools as well as public governance schools and studies, and other forms of social education.
Those who run public (government) and private institutions and other organisations, particularly African governments and other organisations run – rather on personal whims than on public policy and public interest – would benefit greatly from(by) reading this powerful piece on unfettered business and organisational management as well as individual and organisational character building.
It always fills me with great joy rereading it, trying to make sense out of the nonsense – the garbage – spewed out dressed in fancy garbs of officialdom; using unintelligible business jargon to project a superior grasp of the theoretical business and organisational management nonsense they do not understand its origin, let alone remotely understanding its proper application.
Character and integrity.
Character and integrity are critical components to the development of both the individual and organisation. Character and integrity not only make an individual a great person, but it’s what makes and defines a great organisation. Organisational character and integrity are critical factors to the longterm sustainability of any organisation, public or private.
Nothing can compensate for the inadequacy or complete lack of character and integrity, in an individual, demonstrable in the willingness – and possibly desire – to self-dehumanise to appeal to – and appease – the whims and fancies of another exalted individual who equally lacks in character and integrity themselves.
“We are faced with a new and enormous power and a growing one. Whither is the young giant tending? What gifts does he bring? How will he exercise his privilege and powers? What influence will he exercise on the minds of men and on our public life?” CP Scott, A Hundred Years.
Without character and integrity, it’s impossible to have a sense of duty to oneself: to live one’s ideals and beliefs. One risks living on others’ whims, being tossed back and forth, left, right and centre, much to their delight than – even as reprehensible but at least – to their service.
“To the man, whatever his place on the paper, whether on the editorial, or business, or even what may be regarded as the mechanical side– this also vitally important in its place–nothing should satisfy short of the best, and the best must always seem a little ahead of the actual“
“It is here that ability counts and that character counts, and it is on these that a newspaper, like every great undertaking, if it is to be worthy of its power and duty, must rely.” CP Scott, A Hundred Years