Wacker theories of being and time
Monday 18 August 1997
But the US has been lapping it up, and the book, co-authored with Jim Taylor, global marketing director for the computer company Gateway 2000, and journalist Howard Means, has just been published in the UK.
Wacker, described recently as "a 43-year-old blond teddy bear", attributes some of this success to a growing interest in the future as the millennium approaches. But he takes an original approach.
The idea, he explains, is to provoke rather than instruct. As such he likens his role to that of a court jester. "My job is to poke holes into things that are apparent." Insisting he has no ambition to be king or kingmaker, he says he can whisper things that get others beheaded.
Conversely, given he is constantly pointing out that the ever-increasing pace of change has created chaos in place of order, he preaches that companies must, above all, aim to survive. "The definition of a successful company is being," he says, adding that, in the effort to survive, the US firm General Electric, for example, now makes a significant proportion of its profits from financial services.
The companies that do not evolve like this are in denial, believes Wacker, who has worked with such clients as Coca-Cola, Volvo, Nike and Gateway 2000. And it is his job to disturb the complacency of those who are convinced that their success will continue for ever.
Conscious that many executives are immune from the world around them he seeks to introduce them to trends and changes in attitudes and, above all, the idea that companies must become demand-led, in the way that Gateway is in building personal computers to order.
Once a company has a proper sense of the world and its place in it, it can set out its goals. This leads to the title. Wacker says companies should forget five-year business plans and prepare ones to last half a century.
The second part of the title is a double entendre - "delta" is Greek for change and refers to the area at the end of a river which can be water, swamp or more solid land. "For us," he says, "crossing the delta is perilous because you can't tell whether it's quicksand or terra firma."
`The 500-Year Delta' is published by Capstone at pounds 15.99
- 3 The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
- 4 British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd
30,000 reasons why the rhetoric on immigrants claiming benefits can stop now
iJobs Money & Business
£30000 - £32000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, int...
£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This rapidly expanding business...
£25 - 28k + Bonus: Guru Careers: An In-house / Internal Recruiter is needed to...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Tax Assistant is required to join a leading ...