The Amoco Pencil Retention PolicyPosted: June 8, 2015
You never know what you might find when looking back through your archives. The Amoco pencil policy memo came my way may years ago via a colleague, Rich Mac Millan, from the Amoco Joliet Chemical plant.
This historical treasure provides insight into business culture of the times. There is pronounced top-down management control. The company was introducing a new advancement in office productivity that came with a significant investment to be protected. They put in place a highly detailed implementation plan for a six-month trial, and it’s clear that the only acceptable response to this memo was, “Yes, sir.” No negotiating, no putting a personal spin on the process. Employee empowerment, teams, collaborative decision making, etc. were not in the business lexicon at that time. Imagine today’s Gen X and Gen Y employees working in such an environment.
P.S. The pencils in the picture are now mine courtesy of eBay. It will be a time honored reminder of how things change.