The One Minute Manager

There’s a well-respected theory that self-help books for women, and cookery programmes for men, fulfil the same purpose. Those that indulge feel that reading the book or watching the programme actually constitutes doing the thing.

I’m just as bad as anybody else, of course. I read a lot of business books, both on and off-line. Then I go away and carry on doing what I was doing before!

Anyway, this week I went back to an old favourite, which has been in my home library for about thirty years (!). It’s that old classic The One Minute Manager, by Blanchard and Johnson. I’ve read it too often, and it’s falling apart.

Do you know, it’s just as good today as it was in the early eighties!

Like almost every other self-help or business or management guru book, it is basically common sense – but that is also its strength.

Think of an idea, simplify it, simplify it again, then put it into bullet points so that everyone can tick off what they have done when they have done it.


So you get the One Minute Goal Setting, the One Minute Praising and the One Minute Reprimand. I’m fine at the first two, but I’m still lousy at telling people off when they have done something wrong.

Now, is that a male/female thing? Answers on a postcard please!

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