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Friday, May 20, 2005
The Art of Delegation

Fifty Million ($50,000,000) in one day. Sixteen million, five hundred thousand ($16,500,000) from midnight screenings. Those are the totals for the new Star Wars box office receipts. Of course if you've seen the other five movies, you'll have to see this one, simply for closure. But the question of the day remains.... "Is it any good?" Fans and critics alike have been disappointed by the previous two movies, and they all wanted something more from this one. The critics seem to like this one much better than previous versions, although Hayden Christensen must be considered a front runner for the worst actor award from the Golden Razzies next year. A computer generated cartoon has more charisma than he does. The dialog was stiff and the acting in general pretty poor, but the effects, story, and action were outstanding. My overall rating is eight out of ten.

George Lucas wrote and directed the first Star Wars film. But for "The Empire Strikes Back" and "Return of the Jedi," he wrote the story, had Lawrence Kasdan punch up his script, and talented directors took the helm to shoot the movie and get the most out of the actors. This allowed him to focus his energy on the groundbreaking effects and production management for which he is famous. The new films? All written and directed solely by Lucas himself. And all have had the same general criticisms about wooden acting and cheesy dialog.

How does all this relate with business improvement? With the Empire and Jedi films, Lucas discovered his niche. He turned a successful space opera into a franchise of films with enough depth to become, not just popular mass market fare, but to actually earn the right to be considered as some of the most artful film-making of the last quarter century. He did this by delegating the details which were not within his area of expertise. Lucas allowed the best in the business to write, to do the the shooting script and to work with the actors.

How many times do we get caught up in doing things that we are not suited for? Outsourcing delegating to experts can save time and ultimately help us deliver a superior product or service. Like Lucas, perhaps we should focus on the story our business is telling to the marketplace, and let the hired guns take care of the details.

Here's an article from our library all about how to successfuly delegate.


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