A report arrives from Proudfoot Change Management, the US subsidiary of management consultants Proudfoot plc. It is entitled 'Hesitant at the Helm - American executives in a sea of change' and features on its cover a colour reproduction of the Raft of the Medusa, the celebrated work of the 19th-century French artist, Theodore Gericault. Inside, a rousing caption explains the painting's relevance to the plight of the American executive: 'a classic depiction of heroism in the face of change'. What Proudfoot fails to mention is that Gericault's scene - a group of muscular figures adrift on a raft - portrays the aftermath of an officer's mutiny in which the survivors only kept alive by killing the wounded and eating their flesh. Change indeed - but hardly a model of corporate strategy.
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