Wonderful as accepting the knowledge of authority is, while, most of the time, it is essential to question the ideas and decisions of those people in the positions of authority. We can see through John Nash’s doubt on the dominant theory, which contributed to his Nobel Prize. In addition, General Electric benefited from the former Chief Executive Officer Jack Welch’s challenge to authority.
By questioning the original economic theory of Adam Smith, John Nash won the Nobel Prize of Economics for his Game Theory. First and foremost, when he was in Princeton University in 1950, Nash challenged the theories in The Wealth of Nations, written by Adam Smith, the father of modern economics. Specifically, according to Smith, the theory goes that individual ambition serves the common good. In other words, by pursuing his own interest, the individual frequently promotes that of the society effectually. However, Nash put forward a different opinion that individuals’ ambitions are conflicting, conveying that in the pursuit of group’s interests, each individual should do what is best for himself and the group. As a result of the steadfast query, Nash established “Nash Equilibrium” systemically and successfully which is the foundation of Game Theory. Simultaneously, he reformed the fundamental theories in the realm of economics. Consequently, he was awarded the Nobel Prize indisputably in 1994. Were it not for John Nash’s question to Adam Smith’s theory, John Nash would not have been a eminent economist and attained considerable achievements.
Jack Welch injected a fresh, healthy blood to General Electric and made it a top company by challenging people in authority. Welch had been an outstanding engineer before he was appointed as the former CEO of General Electric. In his abundant work experience, he gradually realized that the bureaucracy resulted in the tendency of everything to be formal but made General Electric informal. After he was voted as the CEO, Welch announced that no one should allow himself to be the victim of an institution and he took some measures to reform the corporation system immediately. For example, he shut down factories, reduced payrolls and cut lackluster old-line units. What’s more, Welch would fire the bottom 10% of his managers resolutely. Eventually, the nine-layer management hierarchy was destroyed successfully and the group was allowed to move quickly and communicate fluently. By virtue of theses strong and harsh efforts, the market capital of General Electric surged to 280 billion dollars in 2001 from 12 billion dollars in 1981. Currently, in return for challenging authority, Welch’s net worth is estimated at the surprising number of 720 million dollars.
Both Nash and Welch took their own measures to challenge the authority in different fields. As a result they succeeded ultimately and established their enterprises. Therefore, in order to succeed, we must be brave enough to question others’ viewpoints and express our own opinions.
TOEFL listening lectures: A university arts lecture on Greek drama