Work Intelligent!



One response to “Work Intelligent!

  1. During my editorship of “Tarmac Topics”, the monthly journal of the Royal Aero Club of Western Australia, I attended a recruiting seminar of a major international airline. The company was looking for people who would train to become captains of its passenger aircraft.

    On the board the presenter had listed the ten most desirable qualities of a captain. Ten.

    Seventh in the list of ten was ‘Intelligence’; and it had a qualification: ‘Moderate intelligence’. Seventh.

    When several in the audience queried this lowly ranking the presenter was unperturbed:

    “That’s right. Modern aircraft aren’t piloted by people, they’re flown by machines. Intelligent people want to experiment, to fiddle with things. That would be disaster. What we want in our captains is good ambassadors for the company.”

    Silence ran through the audience, although I’m sure I heard a whispered “Do you think the presenter is a robot?”

    Albert Einstein had a similar response when approached about becoming the newly-formed Israel’s head-of-state:

    “You simply cannot afford to have intelligent people in charge. They make life intolerable for the rest of us.”

    Decades after that seminar I find myself wondering if the captain of the Costa Concordia was selected under a similar philosophy.

    So what happens to our most agile minds? Their bodies take them overseas, of course, to live and to work as expatriates, where they will spawn the jobs that will be important in ten years time.

    Soon the one million of us already off-shore will be joined by the 700 to be dispossessed by our premier research organisation, the CSIRO.

    The historian Donald Horne has described Australia as ” … a lucky country run by second-rate people.”

    Was Donald being derogatory? Or simply grateful.

Confessions, revelations and discourse welcome here

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