Death by Merger
PublishedAugust 14, 2011 CategoryBertie in Business

Death by Merger

A corporate entity, which starts
As just an aggregate of parts,
Evolves in time, within its whole,
An idiosyncratic soul.

This personality defeats
Analysis by balance sheets,
The way your character eludes
The X-ray and the cathode tubes.

For what we are, on this strange earth,
Defines our value and our worth;
Not, for a man, his ears or throat,
Nor, for a company, its quote.

Yet analysts are prone to make
This odd but seminal mistake,
And think the rules of purchase hold
When companies are bought or sold.

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The Bankers (1982)
PublishedJune 3, 2011 CategoryBertie in Business

The Bankers (1982)

Oh to be in banking
Now that April’s here!
And celebrate a spanking,
Profitable year!
Some prefer to hear a
Cuckoo on the wing,
But oh to be a Clearer
Now that it is Spring!

Better than the crocus
Peeping through the soil;
Richer than the hocus
Pocus with the oil;
Money is the medium
Surer than the rest,
For sweetening the tedium
With the interest!

Other men may hanker
For a bluer sky,
But oh to be a banker
Now the rates are high!

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The Multinational Corporation
PublishedMarch 26, 2012 CategoryBertie in Business

The Multinational Corporation

When James D. Flaherty O’Rourke
Came from Dublin to New York,
And peddled round his hot potatas,
Few financial commentators
Forecast he was on the brink
Of World Wide Hot Potatas Inc.,
Founding his Global Enterprise
On Chirpy Chips and Handy Fries –
But such are the bizarre gestations
Of Multinational Corporations.

And having made the humble spud
Synonymous with motherhood,
And Chips With Everything the toast
Of every home from coast to coast,
He felt that he should not deny
The culture of the Handy Fry
To less sophisticated clients,
Untutored in potato science;
And ripe, on Wall Street’s best assessment,
For World-Wide’s overseas investment.

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The Young Executive
PublishedDecember 9, 2012 CategoryBertie in Business

The Young Executive

Since I was waist high to a flea,
Papa would take me on his knee
And, from time to time, decree
The life that I should live;
I’d always thought I’d go to sea,
Or be a farmer such as he,
But he insisted that I be
A Young Executive.

Acquaintance with my father’s boot
Had taught reluctance to dispute
Suggestions he might contribute
And so I acquiesced;
Requesting what might constitute
The Young Executive’s pursuit,
And what it is they execute
That had so much impressed. Continue Reading »

Executive Stress
Published CategoryBertie in Business

Executive Stress

I observe, in the press,
Embarras de richesse
Of ideas for relief
Of executive stress.
And, with each diagnosis,
Some further prognosis,
On optimum means
Of a metamorphosis.

Some believe in mens sana
In corpore sano,
And the marathon jog
By the Thames or the Arno;
Till the rampant corpuscle,
And ache in the muscle,
Put paid to the pains
Of executive hustle.

While others, I find,
Are more strongly inclined,
To some Freudian view
That it’s all in the mind;
And executive gloom
Can be traced to the Womb,
Or the Ego and Id,
As they elbow for room.

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Business School Song
Published CategoryBertie in Business

Business School Song


Memorandum nunc, Anate – Aquatica* celere
Est scribendum Directori venditorum hodie.

                                  (Get right in here, Miss Puddle-Duck,
                                    And take a memo, right away.
                                   Address it to the Sales Director.

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The Power of Positive Blinking
PublishedDecember 4, 2012 CategoryBertie in Business

The Power of Positive Blinking

Since Wishes, as we young were taught,
Are often Fathers to the Thought;
And Thinking, for the businessman,
Is worth avoiding when he can;
And since our Board had had their fill
Of all this Corporate-Planning swill;
We’d drawn, at last, our clear conclusion –
All cerebration is delusion !

Henceforth we would value higher
The cause of Corporate Desire,
And decimate the competition
By force of Positive Volition !

Just one whisper of a mention
Of this laudable intention,
Brought Press and Television news
All pestering us for interviews,
With brokers rampaging amock
And hyping up the company stock.

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A Corporate Prayer
PublishedDecember 3, 2012 CategoryBertie in Business

A Corporate Prayer

Bless us Lord, and help us live,
Like every good executive,
A life more selflessly inclined
To what is in our Owner’s mind;
And may it be Thy wish, and his,
To tell us what his thinking is,
The way it was when we began,
Before we had the Corporate Plan.

Help Thy servants on the Board
Understand his words, O Lord,
Since he changed his erstwhile manners,
And joined the Long Range Corporate Planners;
And if he needs must bore the pants off
All of us with Igor Ansoff,
Help us understand the charts –
Even the Synergistic parts.

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Chips With Everything
PublishedDecember 2, 2012 CategoryBertie in Business

Chips With Everything

Why do they say the way to hell
Is paved with good intentions,
When every business person knows
It’s paved with new inventions?

And three advances, out of four,
These gurus tell us matter,
Are less about producing more
Than processing the data!
So what we make, or what we sell,
And what the banker loans us,
We spend on keeping up with all
The information Joneses!

Now, first we mortgaged half the firm
To buy the big computer,
And stood the business on its head
To pacify and suit her;
But what with systems analysts,
And useless information,
The choice was kill the wretched thing
Or file for liquidation!

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The Smaller Businessmen
Published CategoryBertie in Business

The Smaller Businessmen

We are the Smaller Businessmen,
(In revenues, not bodies);
The future now belongs to us,
The politicians’ nod is.
We are a million or so,
Awaiting our deployment,
And if we each take on a man,
We’ll beat the unemployment.

We are the Smaller Businessmen,
But wish that we were bigger;
We’re told that Small is Beautiful,
But Big is on the trigger.
And what between the interest
And loans for which we hanker,
I wish our dear old Mums and Dads
Had raised us for a banker.

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