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“The Essential Drucker” by Peter Bucker Essay

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Updated: Sep 8th, 2020


‘The Essential Drucker’ by Peter Bucker offers the best introduction to management. The book is compiled from other books by the same author to make his previous works more comprehensible. The book covers three important subjects: the management as a whole, the individual and, finally, the society. The first chapter covers the first subject to management. The chapter discusses the various aspects of management and how different techniques can be used to improve it. The second chapter is about the second subject, the individual. The chapter explains ways of improving the capabilities of the individual in management. The last chapter is about society. It discusses the development of society in relation to management. This paper briefly highlights what the book ‘The Essential Drucker’ is about.

Main Body

In general, chapter one is about management as a whole. The chapter explains how management, as an organ of the organization, has developed over the years. The chapter starts by describing the origin of management and how it has advanced over time. Before the 1850s, the concept of management was unknown and unappreciated until World War II. During World War II, America emerged victorious despite the fact that its enemies had larger numbers of troops and were better strategists. The trick was that the United States were better at managing their army. Since then, the world became management-conscious (Drucker 12). Drucker notes that the relationship between entrepreneurship and management is often misunderstood as mutually exclusive. He affirms that the two are mutually dependent on one another.

Chapter one does not end there but goes further to explain some critical aspects of management that managers ought to know. First, it summarizes the tasks of the management into three; establishing the specific mission and purpose of the institution, increasing the productivity of work and making the workers more effective, and lastly, managing the social impacts of the business and social responsibility. Drucker cleverly uses this to explain that the popular position held by economists that the purpose of business and consequently of the management is to maximize profits is false. Instead, he explains that social contribution is the main purpose of the business, but to achieve it, businesses must be highly profitable.

He moves on to the next part in which he explains the important lessons for-profit businesses can learn from the nonprofit organizations which are doing better because their purpose for doing business is different. The managers of the nonprofits concentrate on the social contribution while the for-profit concentrate on profit maximization. The chapter explains many other things that are important for management. Among them are social problems and social impacts, a new paradigm in management, what information executives of today need to know, using objectives and self-control in management, the basics rules needed when picking people, the entrepreneurial business strategies, and the new venture. Drucker discusses several issues under these topics that are important for managers of the contemporary world. In summary, the whole chapter highlights some of the critical aspects of management that are crucial for managers if they want to be successful.

Chapter two focuses on the development of the individual to become better in the performance of functions in their different capacities. The chapter is keen on the knowledge workers who are products of the management. The traditional workers who were mainly manual laborers were only required to have the ability to do things the right way. In contrast, their counterparts, the knowledge workers, are expected to possess the capacity to get the right things done. Due to the essence of the knowledge workers in the contemporary workplace, this chapter explains the ways of optimizing the abilities of the knowledge workers. In the first part of the chapter, Drucker posits that effectiveness is achieved through learning. Drucker defines knowledge workers as executives because of their contribution to the performance of the organization. These executives may have the intelligence, knowledge, and imagination needed, but it is the effect that causes results. Drucker explains in details the ways of achieving efficiency.

They include focusing on the individual, knowing your values, strengths, time, how to make decisions, nurturing a functioning communication, defining leadership as work and understanding the principles of innovation. About these topical issues, Drucker has an interesting way of looking at the underlying concepts. He starts by describing the common beliefs which are often misleading. Drucker also brings the readers to understand the importance of preparing oneself for the second half of their lives. According to Drucker, most workers are not innovative in their second half of life. Management of self in preparation for this stage is essential in maintaining innovativeness. Drucker completes the chapter by describing knowledge. Knowledge is personal because a person does its creation, augmentation, improvement application and transferring. This discredits the earlier notions that knowledge is acquired from other sources that are impersonal search as books. In short, the chapter depicts people as responsible for their development.

In chapter three, the author focuses on the emergence of the knowledge society, particularly in the twentieth century and its impact on the management. This chapter begins by explaining the history of the society. Initially, the society was filled with the farmers and domestics workers. Later, they declined and were replaced by the blue-collar workers who stayed for a short period before being replaced by the white-collar workers. White collar workers did not stay for a long time. They were quickly replaced by the knowledge workers who are almost the dominant group in the society. As an afterword, the chapter concludes by using the current events and historical development to predict the future. The author predicts that the center of gravity in the market to shift to the customer. This will cause management challenges and organizations will depend on the individual to solve these problems. In essence, the author advocates for the empowerment of the individual and the society as a whole to deal with these challenges. In summary, this chapter is about the gradual transformation of the society and how it can be utilized to enhance the performance of business.


The book ‘The Essential Drucker’ by Peter Drucker has a unique way of approaching management problems. The Author did his research well to discover that managers ignore simple aspects of management that undermine their performance. The book is a must read for managers who wish to improve their capability or wish to understand the tenets of management. However, the book is not written specifically for managers but workers and business owners. It keeps the managers at par with the current developments in the market and imparts them with the skills needed to study and understand changes in their environment.

Work Cited

Drucker, Peter. The Essential Drucker. HarperCollins Publishers, Inc., 2001.

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IvyPanda. 2020. ""The Essential Drucker" by Peter Bucker." September 8, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/the-essential-drucker-by-peter-bucker/.


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