Chronicles of Management ADD (Ambition Deficit Disorder), vol. 1

In its 1976 annual report Procter and Gamble described itself as a company built on "freedom and individual initiative." The report devotes seven whole pages to unpacking these principles and the various practices that reflect and reinforce them--such as employee involvement, promotion from within, and profit sharing.

Here's the excerpt, which is worth a read given how remarkable it is (can you imagine a public company devoting this level of attention to this issue these days?)

Contrast that with this passage about "organizational and culture" in the company's annual report 50 years later (I picked this year at random). It's so jargony that it's hard to make out what it means in practice, but it's fairly prosaic stuff:

We shouldn't romanticize 1976 P&G or gratuitously diss 2016 P&G, but this is a good example of how the employee & culture discourse has become focused on optimizing mundane details of the "employee experience" rather than honoring enduring, human-centric principles.  And that's a problem.