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CONTENTS An Essay on Management
Volume 2, No. 2
August, 1951
Official Publication of
The Hubbard Dianetic Foundation, Inc.
Wichita, Kansas

An Essay on Management

L. Ron Hubbard

A knowledge of Group Dianetics should include a knowledge of management, its problems and optimum performances. In Group Dianetics, the best organization can be seen to be one wherein all individual members of the group are versed in all the problems and skills in the group, specializing in their own contributions but cognizant of the other specialties which go to make up group life.

It is an old and possibly true tenet of business — at least where business has been successful — that management is a specialty. Certainly it is true that ruling, as Group Dianetics concerns itself with government, is a specialized art and craft not less technical than the running of complex machinery, and certainly, until Dianetics, more complex.

With our present technology about groups, it is possible to accomplish with certainty many things which before came out of guesses when they emerged at all. Management in the past has been as uncodified in its techniques as psychiatry, and management, without reservation, has almost always been a complete failure. Men were prone to measure the excellence of management in how many dollars a company accumulated or how much territory a country acquired. These are, at best, crude rules of thumb. Until there was another and better measure, they had to serve. To understand that these are not good measures of the excellence of management one has only to review the history of farms, companies and nations to discover that few have had any long duration and almost all of them have had considerable trouble. Management has failed if only because the “art” of managing as practiced in the past required too much hard labor on the part of the manager.

Until one has considered the definitions of wealth and expanded territory and has taken a proper view on what these things really comprise, one is not likely to be able to appreciate very much about management, its problems or its goals. Hershey, a brilliant manager with a brilliant managing staff, yet failed dismally as a manager because he neglected the primary wealth of his company — his people and their own pride and independence. His reign of a company ceased with his people — well-paid engineers and laborers, well housed, well clothed — shooting at him with remarkably live ammunition. The brilliant management of Germany which came within an inch of restoring to her all her conquests of former years yet laid Germany in ruins.

Before one can judge management one has to consider the goals of an enterprise and discover how nearly a certain management of a certain enterprise was able to attain those goals. And if the goal of the company is said to have been wealth, then one had better have an understanding of wealth itself, and if the goal is said to have been territory, then one had better consider what, exactly, is the ownership of territory.

Goals and their proper definition are important because they are inherent in the definition of management itself. Management could be said to be the planning of means to attain goals and their assignation for execution to staff and the proper coordination of activities within the group to attain maximal efficiency with minimal effort to attain determined goals.

Management itself does not ordinarily include the discovery and delineation of the goals of a group. Management concerns itself with the accomplishment of goals otherwise determined. In large companies the goals of the group are normally set forth by boards of directors. When this is done, the goals are assigned the nebulous word “policy.” In governments goals, when they are assigned at all, generally stem from less formal sources.

Nations are so large that until they embark upon conquests they usually have few national goals which embrace all the group. The government personnel itself has the goal of protecting itself and exerting itself in management, and the remainder of the group bumbles along on small sub-goals. When a goal embracing a whole nation is advanced and defined the nation itself coalesces as a group and flashes forward to the attainment of advances. It is an uncommon occurrence at best that a nation has a goal large enough to embrace the entire group: thus governments are normally very poor, being management with only the purpose of managing. Asia Minor, given a goal by Muhammet, exploded into Europe. Europe, given a goal by certain religious men to the effect that the city of the Cross had better be attained, exploded into Asia Minor. Russia, selling five-year plans and world conquest plans and minority freedom plans, can have a conquest over any other nation without any large group goals. A good goal can be attained by poor management. The best management in the world never attained group support in toto in the absence of a goal or in the embracing of a poor one. Thus Russia could be very badly managed and succeed better than an excellently managed but goalless United States (for self-protection is not a goal, it’s a defense). Marx is more newly dead than Paine. The goal is less decayed.

Companies obtain, usually, their “policy” from an owner or owners who wish to have personal profit and power. Thus a sort of goal is postulated. Nations obtain their goals from such highly remarkable sources as a jail bird with a dream of a conquered enemy or a messiah with cross in hand and Valhalla in the offing. National goals are not the result of the thinking of presidents or the arguments of assemblies. Goals for companies or governments are usually a dream, dreamed first by one man, then embraced by a few and finally held up as the guidion of the many. Management puts such a goal into effect, provides the ways and means, the coordination and the execution of acts leading toward that goal. Muhammet sat alongside the caravan routes until he had a goal formulated and then his followers managed Muhammetanism into a conquest of a large part of civilization. Jefferson, coding the material of Paine and others, dreamed a goal which became our United States. An inventor dreams of a new toy, and management, on the goal of spreading that toy and making money, manages. Christ gave a goal to men. St. Paul managed that goal into a group goal. In greater or lesser echelons of groups, whether it is a Marine company assigned the goal of taking Hill X428 by the planner of the campaign, or Alexander dreaming of world conquest and a Macedonian Army managing it into actuality, or Standard Oil girdling the world because Rockefeller wanted to get rich, the goal is dreamed by a planning individual or echelon and managed into being by a group. The dreamer, the planner, is seldom an actual member of the group. Usually he is martyred to a cause, overrun and overreached. Often he lives to bask in glory. But he is seldom active management itself. When he becomes management, he ceases to formulate steps to be taken as lesser goals to greater goals and the group loses sight of its goal and falters. It is not a question of whether the dreamer is or is not a good manager. He may be a brilliant manager and he may be an utter flop. But the moment he starts managing, the group loses a figurehead and a guidon and gains a manager. The dreamer of dreams and the user of flogs on lazy backs cannot be encompassed in the same man, for the dream, to be effective, must be revered and the judge and the task master can only be respected. Part of a goal is its glamor and part of any dream is the man who dreamed it. Democracy probably failed when Jefferson took office as president, not because Jefferson was a bad president but because Jefferson, engrossed with management, ceased his appointed task of polishing up the goals.

According to an expert on history, no group ever attains a higher level of ideal or ethic than at the moment it is first organized. This observation should be limited, to be true, to those groups wherein management has been assigned to the dreamer of the dream. For in those cases where the dream was ably supported, the tone of the group remained high and the group continued to be brilliantly effective as in the case of Alexander whose generals did all the generaling and Alexander, a brilliant individual cavalryman, set examples and pointed out empires.

But whether a group has an Alexander or a wild-eyed poet or an inventor doing its goal setting for it, the group cannot be an actual or even an effective group without such goals for its achievement and without management brilliant enough to achieve those goals.

Having examined the source of such goals, one should also examine the character of goals in general. There are probably as many goals as there are men to dream them, probably more. Goals can be divided into two categories, roughly. The first would be survival goals and the second would be non-survival goals. Actually most goals are a combination of both for goals are occasionally set forth solely for their appeal value, not for their actual value. One sees that the goal of a nation which directs it to conquer all other nations ends up, after occasional spurts of prosperity, in racial disaster. Such a goal is not dissimilar to the money goal of most “successful” industrialists or boards. One might call such goals acquisitive goals entailing, almost exclusively, the ownership of the MEST accumulated through hard work by others. Technically one could call these EnMEST goals, for conquest of nations brings about the ownership of MEST which, by conquest, has been enturbulated into EnMEST and which will make EnMEST of the conqueror’s own land eventually. Rapacious money gathering gains EnMEST, not MEST, and makes EnMEST of the rightful money of the acquisitor. Such goals, since they tend toward death, are then non-survival goals. Survival goals are good and successful in ratio to the amount of actual Theta contained in them, which is to say, the ability of the goals to answer up favorably on a maximum number of dynamics. A survival goal then is actually only an optimum solution to existing problems, plus Theta enough in the dreamer to reach well beyond the casual solution. A group best catalyzes on Theta goals, not only to a higher pitch but to a more lasting pitch than a group catalyzed by EnMEST goals as in a war. It can be postulated that Theta goals could bring about a much higher level of enthusiasm and vigor than the most grandly brass-banded war ever adventured upon.

Another postulate is that a goal is as desirable as it contains truth or true advantage along the dynamics.

A group, then, can be seen to have three spheres of interest and action. The first is the postulation of goals. The second is management. The third is the group itself, the executors of the plans, procurers of the means and enjoyers of the victories.

These three factors or divisions must be satisfied to have a successful group or, actually, a true group. The divisions are not particularly sharp. The desires and thoughts of the body of the group influence and catalyze and are actually part of the goal finder. Management has to have the support of the group and the provision of the group to proceed at all and thus must have the agreement of the group for the best and most economical execution of orders. Management must have the confidence of the planning echelon or the planning echelon is liable to include the reform of management as part of the dream. The goal finder must be accepted and trusted by management or management will begin to look around for a new goal finder and, being management, not a goal finder, may take up with some highly specious ideas which management might then seek to make a sub-echelon to itself (the thing which causes most nations to cave in and most companies to collapse).

There are three divisions of action, then, which are interactive and interdependent. ARC amongst these three must be very high. A group which is hated by its management (often the case in the military) often gets wiped out; a whole system may be destroyed (as in American industry) when management and the group decide to become two camps. The death of the goal finder is not destructive to a group but even sometimes aids it, but only so long as the dream itself lives and is kept living. A management, for instance, which would interpose (for the “good” of the group) between the goal finder and the group is leveling death at the group by perverting and interpreting the character of the goal. Management cannot concern itself with the overall goal or plan; it can only execute and expedite the plans of accomplishing the goal and relegate its own planning to ways and means planning, not goal planning. The traffic between the group and the goal finder should be direct and clean of all “interpretations” unless management wishes to destroy the group (in which case it should, by all means, undertake an interruption of communication between the goal finder and the group). The place of the goal finder is in the market place with the group or off somewhere sitting down thinking up a new idea. The place of management is in the halls and palaces, arsenals and timekeepers’ cages, behind the judges’ bench and in the dispatcher’s tower. Management leads the charge after the goal finder has assigned the cause of the campaign.

Management is subservient to goals but goal finding is not in command of management. So long as a management realizes this it will continue in a healthy state as a management and the group, modified by natural factors such as food, clothing and general abundance, will remain in excellent condition. When management fails to realize this, the goal finder, even when he is merely an individual who enjoys the making of vast fortunes, shifts the management. When the goal finder is actually high Theta and management forgets the quality of ideas (or doesn’t ever quite realize their potency) then, again and more so, management will be tumbled around, for a Theta goal finder has behind him a group and in a moment can become much more group than management and easily empties out the halls and palaces. A management that discredits its goal finder or perverts the communication of goals of course dies itself but, in dying, may also kill a group.

Management often takes the goal finder into its confidence and requests the solution to various problems. Management should understand that when it does such a thing it is not taking conference with more management, for the advice it will receive on technical problems, no matter how brilliant, is usually delivered with asperity, for the goal finder has no sight of tenuous lines of supply, quivering bank balances, raging labor leaders, leases and contracts unsigned or perilously inadequate. The goal finder sees goals; management sees obstacles to goals and ways of overcoming them. The first requisite of a goal finder is to see goals which are attainable only by the most violent ardures and which are yet sparkling and alluring enough to lead forward and onward his own interest (in the case of an EnMEST goal finder) or (if he is a Theta goal finder) his entire group. Management pants between the pressure of the group to attain the goal and the clarion call of the goal finder to go forward.

Yet there are specific means by which management can lighten the burdens for itself, recover and retain its own breath and be highly successful as management, which means that the group, by that management, must be highly successful if its goals are kept bright.

Let us concern ourselves only with true groups. The true group could be defined as one which has (a) a Theta goal, (b) an active and skilled management working only in the service of the group to accomplish the Theta goal and (c) participant members who fully contribute to the group and its goals and who are contributed to by the group; and which has high ARC between goal and management, management and group, group and goal. Here we have no management problems beyond those natural problems of laying the secondary but more complex plans of accomplishing the goals, pointing out and laying the plans for the avoidance of obstacles en route to that goal or those goals and coordinating the execution of such secondary, but most vitally important, plans. Management, having the agreement of the participants, is immediately relieved, by the participants, of some of the planning and, that plague of management, the tying of loose and overlooked ends. Further, management is not burdened with the actual location or cultivation of food, clothing and shelter for the group as in a welfare state, but is only concerned with coordinating group location or cultivation along secondary plans laid by management for the location and cultivation. Management is enriched by the advice of those most intimately concerned with the problems of participation and is apprised instantly of unworkabilities it may postulate. On the goal side it is relieved of the problem management has never solved, the postulation and theorizing of the primary goals of the group. Further, management does not have the nerve-racking task of smoothing out enturbulations and confusions which are the bane of every semi-group.

Now let us consider what might be meant by a true group as opposed to a pseudo-group. A true group falls away from being a true group in the gradient that ARC breaks exist between goals and management, management and group, and group and goals. In the case of a high Theta goal finder and a group in agreement with those goals, a bond between group and goal finder is so copper bound, cast iron strong, whether the goal finder is alive or dead as a person, that a management out of ARC with either the goal finder or the group will perish and be replaced swiftly. But in the interim while that management still exists, the group is not a true group and is not attaining its objectives as it should. This would be the first grade down from a true group toward a pseudo-group. The condition might obtain for some time if management were not quite a true management and not flagrantly out of ARC. The duration that such a management would last would be inversely proportional to the completeness of the ARC break. A severe perversion or break of ARC would bring about immediate management demise. A continuing slight one might find the management tolerated for a longer time. The break with the group, while the goal finder lives, can be of greater severity than with the goal finder without causing management to collapse or be shifted. Break of ARC with a goal finder finds management under the immediate bombardment of a group catalyzed, as a small sub-goal, into the overthrow of management. For this reason most managements prefer a good, safely dead goal finder whose ideals and rationale are solidly held by the group, and most groups prefer live goal finders because so long as the goal finder lives (in the case of a true group), the group has a solid champion, for a Theta goal finder is mainly interested in the group and its individuals and his goals and has very little thought of management beyond its efficiency in accomplishing goals with minimal turmoil and maximal speed.

The next step down from the true group toward a pseudo-group is that point reached where the goals exist as codes after the death or cessation of activity as a goal finder of the goal finder. Management, always ready to assume emergencies exist, being hard-driven men even in the best group, breaks ARC to some slight degree with the codified goals in the name of expediency. Being interested in current problems and seeing the next hill rather than the next planet, management innocently begins a series of such breaks or perversions and begins to use various means to sell these to the group. The group may resist ordinarily but in a moment of real danger may deliver to management the right to alter or suspend some of the code. If management does not restore the break with or perversion of the code, the true group has slipped well on its road to a pseudo-group.

The next major point on the decline is that point where management is management for the sake of managing for its own good, not according to the demised goal finder’s codes of goals, but preserving only some tawdry shadow of these such as “patriotism,” “your king,” “the American way,” “every peasant his own landlord,” etc., etc., etc.

The next step down is the complete break and reversal of ARC from group to management, at which moment arrive the revolution, the labor strikes and other matters.

If management succeeds the overthrown management without the simultaneous appearance of a new goal finder, the old regime, despite the blood let, is only replaced by the new one, for management, despite critics, is normally sincere in its effort to manage and strong management, unless a good Theta goal finder springs up and carries through the revolution or strike, is faced with a continuing and continual emergency which demands the most fantastic skill and address on the part of managers and, oddly enough but predictably, the strongest possible control of the group.

We are examining here, if you have not noticed, the tone scale of governments or companies or groups in general from the high Theta of a near cooperative state, down through the Theta of a democratic republic, down through “emergency management,” down through totalitarianism, down through tyranny and down, if not resurged by a new goal finder somewhere on the route, into the apathy of a dying organization or nation.

A true group will conquer the most MEST. Not even given proportionate resources with another group, it will conquer other groups which are not quite true groups. Brilliance and skill tend naturally to rally to the standards of a true group as well as resources. As a sort of inevitable consequence, MEST will move under a true group. The amount of MEST a true group will eventually conquer — but not necessarily OWN — is directly in proportion to the amount of Theta that group displays — Theta being many things including solutions along the dynamics toward survival. To display Theta the group must definitely tend toward a true group.

A truly successful management is a management in a true group. It is definitely in the interest of management to have as nearly true a group as it can possibly achieve. Indeed, management can actually go looking, for a group’s completion, for a goal finder, or send the group looking for a goal finder and then, the goal finder proving himself by catalyzing the group’s thoughts and ambitions, raise the goal finder’s sphere of action as high as possible and abide thereby without further attempting to modulate or control the goals made (for management is necessarily a trifle conservative, is always liable to authoritarianism and is apt to be somewhat jealous of its power). Probably the most stupid thing a management can do is refuse to let a group become a true group. The group, if at all alive as individuals, will seek (the third dynamic being what it is) to become a group in the true sense. A group will always have around it a goal finder. Management in Industrial America and in Russia tries to outlaw, fight and condemn goal finders. This places the group in the command, not of management, but of a would-be martyr, a John L. Lewis, a Petrillo, a Townsend,*John Llewellyn Lewis, 1880—1959; U.S. labor leader. James Caesar Petrillo, born 1892; U.S. labor leader; president of the American Federation of Musicians 1940—58. Francis E. Townsend, 1867— 1960; American reformer who in I 934 proposed pensions for persons over sixty. and management promptly has to go authoritarian and start killing sections of the third dynamic, which course leads to death, not only of the management but to the business or the nation.

Likewise a group should be tremendously aware of the dullness or the real danger of putting a goal finder into management or insisting that the goal finder manage. Hitler had a battle. He probably had a lot of other battles he could have written about if one and all had recognized what goal finder there was in him and supported his goal finding. Instead, current management threw him into jail and sorted itself out as a target for national wrath (for don’t think the people weren’t behind Hitler, regardless of what the Nazis try to tell our military government). Down went the Republic, up went Hitler as management. Down went Germany in a bath of blood. At best he was a bad goal finder because he dealt with EnMEST, and very little Theta. But he was a hideously bad manager, for by becoming one he could no longer be a good goal finder but, made irascible by the confusions of management, went mad dog.

Being rather low on the tone scale initially, most managements would be very chary of creative imagination level goal finding unless they knew the mechanics of the matter. And these demonstrate that it is unsafe to be without a goal finder, unsafe to suppress goal finders, unsafe not to keep trying for a true group continually and to fight very shy of letting anything drift toward the pseudo-group level. Management should stay in close tune with the group participants and give them as much to say about managing and ways and means as possible, and should avoid assuming the burden of caring for the group, and should assume and keep the role as servants of the group, at the actual command of that group.

Management and enterprises are most highly successful when they attain most energetically toward true group status.

There are certain definite and precise laws by which management can raise the level of its own efficiency and the level of production and activity of a group.

Save when it is necessary to establish a surprise element in an attack or to secure a portion of the group from attack, suppression of OPERATIONAL DATA is permissible to management. Suppression of any other than operational data can disrupt a group and blow management over. Any management which operates as a censorship or a propaganda medium will inevitably destroy itself and injure the group. A management must not pervert affinity, communication or reality and must not interrupt it. A management fails in ratio to the amount of perversion or severance of ARC it engages upon and its plans and the goals of the group are wrong in the exact ratio it finds itself “forced” to engage upon ARC perversion or severance of ARC in terms of propaganda or internal relations.

A management can instantly improve the tone of any organization and thus its efficiency by hooking up and keeping wide open all communication lines between all departments and amongst all persons of the group and communication lines between the goal finder and the group. Fail to establish and keep in open and flowing condition one communication channel and the organization will fail to just that extent.

Communication lines are severed in this fashion: (a) by permitting so much EnTheta to flow on them that the group will close them or avoid them; (b) by perverting the communication and so invalidating the line that afterwards none will pay attention to the line; (c) by glutting the line with too much volume of traffic (too much material, too little meaning); and (d) by chopping the line through carelessness or malice or to gain authority (the principal reason why lines get tampered with).

He who holds the power of an organization is that person who holds its communication lines and who is a crossroad of the communications. Therefore, in a true group, communications and communications lines should be and are sacred. They have been considered so instinctively since the oldest ages of man. Messengers, heralds and riders have been the object of the greatest care even between combatants on EnMEST missions. Priesthoods hold their power through posing or being communication relay points between gods and men. And even most governments consider cults sacred. Communication lines are sacred and who would interrupt or pervert a communication line within a group is entitled to group death — exile. And that usually happens as a natural course of events. Communication lines are sacred and must not be used as channels of viciousness and EnTheta. They must not be twisted or perverted. They must not be glutted with many words and little meaning. They must not be severed. They must be established wherever a communication line seems to want to exist or is needed.

Any management of anything can raise tone and efficiency by establishing and maintaining zealously, as a sacred trust, communication lines through all the group and from outside the group into the group and from in the group outside the group.

The most vital lines of a group are not operational lines, although this may appear so to management. They are the Theta lines between any Theta and the group and the goal finder and the group. Management that tampers with these lines in any way will destroy itself. These actually have tension and explosion in them. It is as inevitable as nightfall that these lines will explode, when tampered with, at the exact point of the tampering. This is a natural law of communication lines.

A line is as dangerous to tamper with as it has truth in its channel. It is safe and even preserving of a line to cut it when it contains EnTheta. For example when a true line is cut, it charges a little power into the cutter and he has authority for a moment thereby. But it is only the authority of the cut line. If the line is thus made to perish, the cutter loses his authority. If there is much truth in that line, it does not give authority to the cutter, it explodes him.

A group has the right to exile anyone it discovers to be guilty of tampering with any communication line.

A management which will pervert an affinity or sever one may gain a momentary power, but the laws here are the same as those relating to communication, and an affinity tampered with will lower the tone of a group.

A management which will pervert or suppress a reality, no matter how “reasonable” the act seems, is acting in the direction of the destruction of a group. It is not what management thinks the group or the goal finder should know, it is what is true. A primary function of management is the discovery and publication, in the briefest form which will admit the whole force of the data, the reality of all existing circumstances, situations and personnel. A management which will hide data, even in the hope of sparing someone’s feelings, is operating toward a decline of the group.

A true group must have a management which deals in affinity, reality and communication, and any group is totally within its rights, when a full and reason