Tag Archives: academia

Academia vs. Business

Today I finally was able to formalize to myself the difference between the academic and business mindset in our company.  When we started, we had, what I found to be these fairly strange turf-wars (which still sometimes happen).  I couldn’t quite understand why they were happening and attributed to “ego”, but now I think it’s much simpler: in academia, you are measured by your resume, which means that the larger your turf, the better you are.  So academics always want to bite off more than they can chew if the pie is there to bite on – they always want more turf.  In business, you want to get as much money for as little turf as possible – a lazy capitalist, if you will, perpetually trying to optimize his resources.

So if you take an academic and put them in charge of something, expect them to be super-territorial until they realize that they can have a much better work/pay ratio if they themselves don’t seek out responsibilities that people didn’t originally intend to give them, but won’t mind relinquishing because then they don’t have to hire someone else to do it.

It’s a funny situation…

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Filed under JoVE, Musings