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The More Is Better Principal June 26, 2014

Posted by Tom Wells in Force of Bureaucracy, Introductions.

Here’s the most obvious observation with a bureaucratic force. The bureaucracy itself does not care about the mission of the group which forms the bureaucracy. Therefore the bureaucracy is only satisfied with the kinds of thing a bureaucracy needs. The number one thin a bureaucracy needs is validation through growth. It is the More Is Better principal.

The most common example is in purchasing. At the end of a fiscal year there is a scramble to spend every last penny of a widget budget. Not because more widgets are needed to fulfill the mission, but because if the budget is not maximized the next year’s budget may be downsized to fit the under spending. This kind of logic only applies in a bureaucracy. It is the result of the Silo Principal (more about that in another post). The mission may not even need the widgets anymore, but the bureaucracy won’t know that for years if it is large enough.

People are nothing more than another widget in the bureaucracy. This is the most insidious example of the More Is Better Principal. In a bureaucracy, power is gained through the amount of people there are to manage because the number one function of bureaucracy is management. A system based on management can best recognize success through the increase of the people needing to be managed. Promotion comes from adding more people who are being managed, therefore it is in the bureaucracy’s best interest to add more people to manage so there can be more upward mobility for the people needing to be managed. Why? Because More Is Better.


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