Theodore Levitt (1925 – 2006)
Influential marketing scholar and former editor of Harvard Business Review
I still remember the day in my undergrad ‘Marketing Basics’ class, when we first came across Theodore Levitt’s seminal masterpiece – ‘Marketing Myopia’. He talks about how great corporations get too narrow-minded in their vision and focus thinking that the industry they are in, will remain unchanged forever. He talks about the oil and railway industry of the US as a classic example. It’s been a long road since my undergrad days and Levitt’s masterpiece is even more valid than ever before in todays fast-changing business landscape, where things move at the speed of light.
Levitt passed away last wednesday (June 29) at the age of 81. In saluting those 81 years of contributing and shaping the marketing world of today, here’s one of his lesser known quotes (one that is not really on his favorite subject – marketing, but more about the art of writing).
“If people don’t read what you write, then what you write is a museum piece.”
[Source: BusinessWeek Online, June 29, 2006]