I was delighted to see Ivor Tiefenbrun featured in a text-and-video package in the FT. Mr Tiefenbrun is the founder of Linn Products, a Scottish maker of expensive hi-fi gear.
In the video, he shares his management philosophy and his passion for making things in a United Kingdom that at last seems to be realising that financial engineering cannot replace real engineering.
What the FT coverage didn’t mention was that back in the early 1980s, Linn was so fed up with the quality of the LPs it used to test its fancy turntable that it started making its own albums.
One of the first it released was A Walk Across the Rooftops by the Blue Nile. It’s a Marmite record: one either swoons over its urban melancholia or dismisses it as laboured melodrama. I’m still swooning.
Anyway, the record label lives on, proving that diversification can be sustained by passion as well as cold calculation.
- McKinsey’s deliberately-provocative list of seven ways in which China might surprise us in 2009 (might it really lease part of Mexico to build factories to serve the North American market?);
- Workplace bullies: a guide to handling them;
- Employees need room to experiment but innovation also requires top-down strategic controls.