Beating a Dead Horse

There are options...
There are options…

Beating a Dead Horse

There is a phrase that is used in business about “Beating/Whipping a dead horse.”  This is often a euphemism for pushing forward on a topic or initiative that is a dead-issue.  But what are the options in lieu of beating a dead horse?  Are there alternatives to make the dead horse more functional or revive it?  Here are some suggestions…

  1. Change riders.
  2. Appoint a committee to study the horse and its lack of performance.
  3. Buy a bigger whip or an additional whip.
  4. Arrange to visit other locations to see how they ride dead horses.
  5. Lower the standards so that everyone is required to ride dead horses.
  6. Threaten the horse to improve its performance.
  7. Appoint a team to prepare a plan to revive the dead horse.
  8. Blame a different rider for riding the horse to death.
  9. Blame another horse.
  10. Create a training session to increase our riding ability.
  11. Compare the state of dead horses in today’s business environment.
  12. Pretend the horse is not dead.
  13. Change your definitions or rules by declaring, “This horse is not dead,” hence you are whipping a live horse.
  14. Hire outside consultants to ride the dead horse.
  15. Harness several dead horses together to increase speed and pulling power.
  16. Get several riders to pick up and carry the horse.
  17. Provide additional incentive funding (more sticks – more carrots) to increase the horse’s performance.
  18. Review industry knowledge to see what other riders do when their horses die.
  19. Purchase a software package to make dead horses run faster.
  20. Go to social media and set up a Kickstarter to raise money to revive your horse.
  21. Revisit the performance requirements for dead horses.
  22. Downsize the dead horse to replace it with a dead donkey.
  23. Promote the dead horse to a supervisory position.
  24. Promote the rider to another horse in hopes that the results will not be the same.
  25. Shorten the track so it looks like the horse went farther before it died.
  26. Remain on the saddle and wait for the horse to be resurrected.
  27. Tell everyone at the stables that you believe that the horse is alive, well, and running better than ever.
  28. Ask the horse how it feels about being dead.
  29. Assure others that the horse’s demise was always part of the plan.
  30. Outsource all horse riding to another country.
  31. Document how the horse died and call it “knowledge.”
  32. Reorganize the placement of the saddle and tack on the horse with the belief that somehow the horse will ride again.
  33. Proclaim that you never thought that horse would have gotten as far as it did and declare the ride a stunning success.
  34. Add an additional rider or two to supervise the horse.
  35. Pretend you never wanted the horse to be ridden in the first place.
  36. Surround the dead horse with three other dead horses and pretend that it is merely moving with the pack.
  37. Shoot the horse’s trainer and owner.
  38. Ignore the dead horse.
  39. Put the same rider on a different dead horse on the same track and hope that the results are not going to be the same.
  40. Request Federal stimulus dollars to resurrect the horse.
  41. Blame the people watching the race for not cheering on the horse enough.
  42. Tell everyone that, “this was never a horse race.”

Be sure to check out my book, Business Rules:  The Cynic’s Guidebook to the Corporate Overlords

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