Management Quote of the Day

Management Quote of the Day
image via ifreshnews

This might become a regular series. Management Crazy Talk QOTD. Today's entry is from Peter Sametz, CEO of Connacher Oil and Rail Enthusiast.

"Rail can get you just about anywhere," Sametz said. "It's like the Harry Potter stairway. You get on the stairs at one end and they move to wherever you need to go. That's the beauty of the railway. You get on at one end here, with your bitumen or dilbit, and then you can end up in different places depending on what are the best markets."

(via Oil and Gas Inquirer)

Your first reaction should be: WTF?

Immediately followed by: What's a Harry Potter Stairway? Do you have to wear Harry Potter glasses in order to spot it? At the top of the stairs, do you meet Scarlet O'Hara right before she dramatically tumbles to the bottom? Is it like Choose Your Own Adventure at that point and you can decide whether or not to save her and her unborn Elizabeth Taylor, or you can save yourself and find out what's at the top of the stairs? And if so, obviously you choose to continue because Liz has a rough pony ride ahead and you think this might be the easier path instead? Once you get to the top, do you find it is a Stairway to Heaven? Or merely a never-ending stairway that goes forever into the sky? If so, that sounds like hell, not heaven?

But mostly you should be left wondering if Sametz's comment clarifies anything at all. Why rail is different from any other mode of transportation that takes things from one place to another, apart from the fact that you're bound by where the railroad infrastructure actually goes? I suppose he is comparing it to pipeline transportation for oil/gas products, which has fewer end destinations.

However, I really wish it were as wonderful as he makes it sound, that as a human, you could just get on a train and end up where the train thinks you'll get the most value. That'd be my dream Harry Potter stairway.

On that note, I present to you: @ShitMgmtSays -- the highlights/lowlights of corporate jargon. It's the new @ShitAnalystsSay.

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