Chapter 23The Dangers of Marketing Professionalism

More than 50 years ago Drucker reported on the allegory of the three stonecutters.1 According to Drucker, these three workers were approached and asked what they were doing. The first answered: “I’m earning a living by cutting stone.” The second one didn’t even pause to look up when the question was asked. This stonecutter continued to work, but eventually took the time to respond: “I’m a stonecutting professional: I’m doing the best job of cutting stone of anyone in my profession.” The third stonecutter had a visionary look on his face as he replied, “I’m building a cathedral.”

I heard that delivered by a nationally known motivational speaker. While this speaker suggested that the third stonecutter ...

Get Drucker on Marketing: Lessons from the World's Most Influential Business Thinker now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.