It is difficult to evaluate a person from one point of view.

One named Robert

“Something happens in a person’s life that affects his personality and beliefs. There are three such incidents in my life, ”Robert said in his autobiography. One of them was the “Great Depression”. In 1933, when he graduated from high school, the unemployment rate among men was 25%. So much so that a friend of his father committed suicide because he could not take care of his family. One of his friends was the daughter of a rich family; Joined the Communist Party. Violent strikes were common in the country. During the attacks on the West Coast in 1934-1936, machine guns were placed on the roofs of coastal buildings to prevent war in the port. The young eyes of the strikebreaker sailor that saw his knee broken. Over the summer holidays, he found a freight job for পরবর্তী 25 per month to earn money for the next semester of school. The conditions on board were a disaster. There was no water flowing where the crew lived. The dormitory bed was crawling with bugs. “When I woke up one morning, I counted 19 bites on my legs,” Robert said. The food was bad too. He lost 5.5 kg during the trip. These experiences taught him the importance of organizing staff.

Robert cited his admission to the University of California, Berkeley College as the second incident that affected his life. Berkeley is a public university. The school’s financial support depended on the decision of representatives of the conservative sector, mostly farmers. But the school’s principals (President Robert Gordon Sprout and Provost Monroe Deutsch) were strong personalities. They maintained an atmosphere of liberal and intellectual freedom in the school. “I spent four years at Berkeley with the idea of ​​a balance of justice, liberty, rights and obligations,” said Robert.

The third incident that had a profound effect on Robert’s life was when he met a smart, attractive and lively girl in his first week of school; He is talking about Margaret. She married him. He described its effects as follows. Margaret has brought strength, balance and joy into my life. I was tired without it. “

Influenced by the Great Depression in the country, Robert studied economics at the university. He also did minor studies in mathematics and philosophy. He then did an MBA from Harvard. He got a job at a consulting firm and worked for a year. He accepted his professor’s call and got a job as an assistant professor at Harvard Business School; He used to teach accounting classes. He lived in a one-room house in Cambridge, where he brought his wife. “We used to wash our dishes in the bathtub,” he says

Robert joined World War II as a Captain in the US Air Force. He has worked in the Statistics Control Office analyzing the efficiency and effectiveness of bombers. He received a Legion of Merit from the U.S. Army for his contributions here and was discharged from the Army as a Lieutenant Colonel.

At the end of the war, his commander in the Air Force’s statistics control department left the army and offered Robert a job. The company, made up of 10 people who worked together in the department during the war, got its first job from Ford. The automobile giant Ford was at a loss at the time. These young men in the Army made a quick start in the Ford Company, which was at a loss at the time. They embarked on a journey to plan, organize, and track existing complex administrations with control function systems. Ford staff nicknamed these young men, who constantly asked questions, as “Quiz Kids.” These test kids call themselves “Who’s Kids”. These talented guys have done a great job at Ford.

Robert Ford was employed; He started working as a ‘Planning and Finance Manager’. Many of them quickly rose to managerial positions. He finally took over as the firm’s first non-Ford president (president) in 1960. During his tenure, he introduced and applied the “scientific management” approach to the Ford Company based on information and scientific analysis.

Not just for Ford, Robert’s greatest gift to humanity is the car seat belt. He first saw the belt on the plane and asked himself, “Why don’t we use it in the car?” Robert, a statistician, analyzed data on automobile crashes in the 1950s. He noticed that the vehicle’s steering wheel, windshield and dashboard were hit during the accident, causing death and significant injuries were being thrown out of the vehicle. He instructed to make and install seat belts in automobiles. However, it has faced resistance from various quarters. There are some people who say that wearing a belt is the opposite of saying “I am a bad driver”. The US government saw the seat belt as a “surplus Ford made to make extra money”. Some experts have even defended the argument that “the harm caused by the seat belt outweighs the benefit.” But Robert tackled all of this and made the seat belt project a reality.

Please comment

The Robert I mentioned above is Robert McNamara. President John F. At Kennedy’s ministry proposal, he became Secretary of Defense with a salary of $ 25,000, while his annual income as Ford’s CEO was close to $ 3 million. After Kennedy, his ministry continued under Lyndon Johnson. Robert McNamara encouraged modernization in the armed forces. He saved money by refusing to spend money on unnecessary or useless weapons. He served as President of the World Bank from 1968-1981.

When McNamara died in 2009, the New York Times headlined: “Architect of a mindless war dies at 93” (Architect of financial war, dies at 93). He has been accused of being a “war criminal” because he was known as one of the escalators of the Vietnam War. I am not a historian, I do not have enough information to give such a verdict. But my interest in Robert McNamara is that he was one of the first to implement the principle of “scientific management”. There are also seat belt problems. It is not right to evaluate a person from only one point of view.

As one American writer, Robert McNamara, put it, “Robert McNamara saved more lives than he did.” Among these saved lives are our own. Three years ago, one morning in March, my wife and I had an accident. Having problems with the gas paddle, we flew to the garden 7-8 meters from our home garage. Seat belts have saved our lives.

You like Robert McNamara, you don’t; I do not know. But if you get in the car, do not hit the gas without fastening the seat belt.

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