We trace the genealogy of wisdom to show that its status in epistemological and management discourse has gradually declined since the Scientific Revolution. As the status of wisdom has declined, so the status of rational science has grown. We argue that the effects on the practice of management of the decline of wisdom may impede management practice by clouding judgment, degrading decision making and compromising ethical standards. We show that wisdom combines transcendent intellection and rational process with ethics to provide a balanced and integrated way of knowing, deciding and acting for managers in a complex and uncertain business environment. Finally, we discuss the role and value of wisdom across a range of business functions including knowledge management, strategic management, leadership and international business.
- Practical Wisdom