Friday, September 01, 2006

Some New Perspective on CWRU Departures

About six weeks ago, I told you to expect the imminent defection of two important leaders from our most important regional university, CWRU's business-school and medical-school deans. Weatherhead School of Business dean Myron Roomkin announced his departure a couple weeks later, and a couple weeks after that came official word that Med School head Ralph Horwitz was departing for Stanford. I've noticed relatively little complaint about Froomkin's departure (that job has been in a constant state of turnover ever since Scott Cowen left years ago) but the concerns registered about Horwitz's leaving have been much more in evidence. But leave it to my friend Sandy Piderit, a management professor at the business school, to put things in perspective. Writing recently in her blog, she argues: "I hope that no one will make the mistake of assuming that the loss of three or four people in visible leadership roles will, by itself, make or break the university. Universities are tremendously resilient; many have survived and thrived after the loss of a few top administrators."


At 6:01 AM, Blogger Sandy Kristin Piderit said...

Hi John,

thanks for highlighting my thoughts. I don't mean to minimize the pain that people in the med school may be experiencing, and yet I want folks to stay positive, keep working on the big projects and not check out of their jobs.

I've already had five people come and read me via your entry, which is cool! I just wish they would leave a comment....

At 1:04 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Sandy, I don't think anyone would think you minimized that pain if they read your entire post, which I hoped they would click over to and read in its entirety. But your note is a good reminder to me that when I quote from something longer, I should also realize that some folks will only read the brief summation, which in this case wouldn't do the entire thing much justice. A timely reminder for me as I edit.

But I'm really happy to hear that some readers grazed over to your site, because that's of course my intent, to introduce readers (in some cases) and remind them in other cases of some of the wonderful writing and commentary to be found elsewhere.

I also loved your recent observations on Michael Ruhlmann's appearance at the Case event marking the beginning of the school year. There's a good reason why Tom Peters, the internationally renowned (and rightly so) management thinker and writer once listed Michael's "Soul of a Chef" among his 10 must-read books. Because, as you noted, it's about much more than "mere" cooking, but, like much of his work, really more about the elusive search for perfection in the practice of one's craft. And that larger theme should be interesting to any thinking person.


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