How Peter Drucker Influenced Me

Jay Maharjan


I recently connected with Bruce Rosenstein, a notable author and a veteran USA Today writer for 21 years. He is the author of “Living in more than one world: How Peter Drucker’s Wisdom Can Inspire and Transform Your Life”. As we were sharing personal anecdotes on Peter Drucker, my mentor at the management school and whom Bruce had as a subject for 20 years for his book, I truly started to reflect the profound influence that Drucker made among the leaders (and followers alike). With Drucker’s humble approach, vast knowledge and the wide contribution he has made with his voracious appetite for management writing, the influence can be felt in the nooks and corners of the world.

I also felt it was a great time for me to reflect on my own journey in life and reflect on the way some of the great business leaders of the twentieth century directly influenced me. I rarely focus on my personal stories, but I feel it is time for me to open up ( By the way, I am deeply influenced by the situational leadership style of Douglas Conant, the past CEO of Campbell) and share my values and the knowledge that I have gained over the years. I have had incredible opportunities to work with some of the greatest minds and personalities in the world and help build several successful enterprises along the way. As of 2011, my enterprises have created jobs for over 250 employees and I strongly intend to scale.

I had a humble childhood within extremely strong and educated family environment in Kathmandu, Nepal. Growing up, I attended an American catholic boarding school run by Jesuit fathers – with an environment extremely suited for individualism, ’sky is the limit’ dialogue and later on fitting to the notion of ‘American Exceptionalism’ – allowing me to have the confidence and the right knowledge to contribute in the United States today. As a teen, when I moved to the United States, my strong early values stuck with me. During the very first week of my arrival, my chance meeting with Stanley Gault (then former CEO of Rubbermaid, Fortune magazine’s most admired company) through a family friend at a local Wal Mart in Wooster, Ohio, changed my perspective on entrepreneurship and forever influenced the way I got involved in forming and sustaining enterprises. Another great influence I had growing up was Lee Iacocca. I read his book ( Iacocca: An autobiography) many times over. Later on, when I had a chance to intern for a major Chrysler project and to come up with a design solution that saved Chrysler corporation over 13 million dollars, I was elated. My work was published in various National and International Journals and was invited to speak at management conventions. While my solution was a design fix in technical nature, I was also drawn by the ineffeciencies, redundant processes and dwindling quality within auto-making, manufaturing processes. Over the years, my interest grew sharply on looking for ways to run enterprises efficiently – fundamentally rethinking corporate management and leadership styles for the emerging conceptual economy.

Have corporations grown too big to be humane? What are the roles of enterprises in the modern day socio-economic environments? Is the relevance of knowledge economy fading when it comes to preparing modern day workforce? Is it time for us to revisit Drucker’s mid-twentieth century take on Entrepreneurship in America? These questions led me to finding my way to Claremont in 1999 to take classes, work on a research paper with Peter Drucker himself. Drucker has influenced me immensely on the way that I think. I am fascinated by the challenges that Drucker impose on his students to find right solutions themselves – following right principles. Drucker routinely emphasized on and focused on the power of asking questions instead of telling people what to do. Though his principles can be misconstrued as little vague, in essence, it has proven to be the foundation, guiding principle for the society in general. No wonder, Presidents of sovereign nations, corporate CEOs, non-profit philanthropists, religious evangelists all have borrowed his knowedge to accomplish amazing results.

I would like to humbly borrow some of Drucker’s thinking as well. The mission of this website is not to provide specific solutions for individual entrepreneurial challenges, though I have thoroughly researched and presented regular expert columns, advices over the years. Rather, I would like to present this 4entrepreneur initiative as a catalyst, a reason to re-energize fire, bring back the hidden passion among all of us to utilize our full potential, skills to contribute to the society that we live in through the medium of entrepreneurship.

One Response to “How Peter Drucker Influenced Me”

  1. shedy says:

    I’m happy to hear about the man “Peter Drucker” who has been a mentor to me and to many other people in the world of management and leadership.Please permit me to borrow this post so that i can post on my site as well.I’m Grateful.

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