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Why does Drucker study Management?

Drucker devoted to Management because of “Sympathy”


Drucker started out as a scholar of Economics and Political Science. His talents and abilities has aroused the interests of the experts of the fields when he was young. However, regardless of the praises from the academic world, he decided to give up on his research works of these two disciplines, and switched to research of management.


The reason behind his action is the “Sympathy”. The word Sympathy is interpreted as “Mercy” in Buddhism, and “Commiseration” in Taoism, which originates from the Taoism saying, “The feeling of commiseration belongs to all men.”


Drucker was born in 1909, right before the outbreak of World War I. He grew up between World War I and World War II. The two World Wars marked the birth and youth of Drucker.

Situated in this historical period, Drucker experienced the brutalities of war, and the revolution movements induced by the war, as well as turmoil sprang up from the Socialism movement in Europe. All of these caused the discontinuity of society, loss of people, life, wealth and knowledge. Peter Drucker was a empathetic spirit, both research conducted and consultation made by Drucker was based on the quest for “ways to avoid these kinds of human sufferings, and what could I do for it?”


His upbringing made him see and experience the misfortune of life, which also motivated him to devote to the academic world.

With such historical background, what social problems were waited to be solved? They are economy and politics. Hence, Drucker became a professor expertise in law and political science.


Due to the rise of Hitler, all academic works of Drucker were banned, Drucker sensed that his live was threatened, and decided to move to America. At the same time, a large amount of European scholars fled from Europe because Hitler was going to initiate the war to occupy the whole continent of Europe.


 Upon Drucker’s arrival in America, he discovered that the American society is going through the process of Systematization.

Many new enterprises sprang up, and replaced the rural society; it becomes the place where people hunted for jobs, sense of existence, recognition, income as well as social status.


The change happened in rural society of America back then, was very similar to the urbanization that is happening in China nowadays, Peasants left the farm and moved to the city. Back to the past, all large industries are centralized in the emerging industrial cities, such as the locomotive industry in Detroit. Drucker was aware of this development trend – New communities sprang up in the society, and this new community was equivalent to work community, which was the precursor of enterprise nowadays.

Author: Shao Ming Lo

              Founder of Peter F. Drucker Academy

              Chairman of Bright China Group


 Lecture by Mr. Shao Ming Lo at Huazhang

What did Drucker see?


Some of the social organizations (enterprises) attain tremendous success, and the reason behind such great success : A certain group of people takes up the responsibility of organization, coordination, and planning, of which is now interpreted as “Management”.


Management works as a tool to bring efficiency to both enterprises and social organizations, which arouse the curiosity of Drucker.

Let People attain sense of accomplishment at work


What was he curious about? Everyone had share of 24 hours each day, disregard the hours spending on sleeping and eating, at least half of the 24 hours were used for working. In the past works were done in farm, now the works were carried out in factory. Factory meant so much to people in that sense.

Factory wasn’t only the source of income, it also replaced the farms that people once situated with industrial and civilized society. If he succeeded at this place, he will enjoyed the life-long prosperity; however, if he experienced frustration, sense of unfairness or sense of insecurity at this place, the experience would ruin his life.  


During the 24 hours, excluding the sleeping time, people spent half of their awaken hours within an organization. Drucker thought that if the issue could be solved, the sufferings happened in life will be resolved to certain extent.


Peter Drucker was never an ideal perfectionist; he never believed that growth stage of human can be flawless. The society was never a perfect ideal society, it could only turn into a society which is of less sufferings and could be tolerated.


Purpose of life is to live a life with less sufferings and misfortune, and which is relatively meaningful, accomplished, contributive and free. And this is the society and life pictured by Drucker.


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