The Hippocratic Oath for Business Managers

Peter Drucker once wrote, regarding managing your externalities, that business managers should take heed of the famous medical field directive “Primum non nocere” which translates to “above all do no harm”.  So what is the connection? Managers speak of profits but don’t explain the purpose. Drucker writes “[Managers] still define the goals of their business as profit maximization.  They do not stress the objective function of profit.  They do not talk of risks – or very rarely.  They do not stress the need for capital.”  So when a company fails to address in their contracts and other business relationships risk factors and the cost of capital, it harms the company by failing to protect its ability to remain in business.  Despite the popular myth of the lack of business acumen in the medical field, doctors have some sound advice that business managers should take heed of.

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