I have no idea where this comes from, but I found two copies of it in my mother’s papers. It obviously appealed to her.
As everyone knows, an executive has practically nothing to do except to decide what is to be done; to tell somebody to do it; to listen to reasons why it should not be done; why it should be done by someone else or why it should be done in a different way; to follow up to see if everything has been done; to discover that it has not; to enquire why; to listen to excuses from the person who should have done it; to follow up again to see if the thing has been done; to discover that it has been done incorrectly; to point out how it should have been done; to conclude that as long as it has been done it may as well be left where it is; to wonder if it is not time to get rid of a person who cannot do a thing right; to reflect that he probably has a wife and a large family; and that any successor would be just as bad, and may be worse; to consider how much simpler and better the thing would have been if one had done it oneself in the first place; to reflect sadly that one would have done it right in twenty minutes; and as things turned out one has had to spend two days to find why it has taken so long, and three weeks for somebody else to do it wrong.
27.11.17. Hadn't looked at this post for some time, and checked out if it was floating around the Net. Of course it was; isn't everything? Anyway, one site claims it dates back to 1941. If that's the case, the person who right was right up to the mark: nothing has changed. If this is how executives actually have to act, it's no wonder things never get done properly, if at all.