chapter  16
Of Vegetables, Carrot Cake, and Castor Oil: What Must We Transfer and Why
Pages 16

There is no question that transferring theory to practice is difficult, uncertain, and problematic. Whereas the initial commentaries emphasize how transfers might be better made, this commentary focuses more on what is being transferred, why it needs to be transferred and the fact that managers may not want to hear of the harsh reality that some academic research findings show. Many managers are hooked on the blue smoke and mirrors of the managerial spin artists. Just as individuals often fail to eat well, exercise, quit smoking, or eliminate booze, managers often do not want to eat their managerial vegetables by exercising their minds. When their careers or their firm’s profits are at stake, they may eat a carrot cake-even one filled with vegetables and thrive. Yet sometimes the reasons for a transfer transcend the mundane search for more money. The theory can call upon managers to take an unrefined dose of castor oil by challenging shared sacred selfserving mythologies.