Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Management Stories # 23 - Value of intellect

Charles Steinmetz was a German-American mathematician and electrical engineer. He fostered the development of alternating current that made possible the expansion of the electric power industry in the United States, formulating mathematical theories for engineers.

He made ground-breaking discoveries in the understanding of hysteresis that enabled engineers to design better electric motors for use in industry. Read more about him here.

Steinmetz was once called out of retirement by General Electric to help it locate a problem in an intricate system of complex machines.

Having spent some time tinkering with and testing various parts of the system, he finally placed a chalk-marked ‘X’ on a small component in one machine.

GE’s engineers promptly examined the component, and were amazed to find the defect in the precise location of Steinmetz’s mark.

Some time later, GE received an invoice from the wily engineer – for $10,000 (huge in those days).

Incredulous, they protested the bill and challenged him to itemize it.

Steinmetz gave this break-up:

Making one chalk mark : $ 1.00

Knowing where to place it: $ 9,999.00

Thats the power of great intellect and intelligence.. any value that you place on it or pay for it is still insufficient.

Realize and recognize the power of intellect in any one around you - it could just be a worker in the last level of your organization, but learn to spot intelligence not by the qualification but by the sheer power of brilliance and commitment. If you learn how to harness the potential of such people, you can be sure of succeeding in a big way.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Super article to support the header :)

Nice one...