2001 as metaphor
Anderson wants managers to overcome the traditional top-down approach and allow a team to develop a life of its own.
He likes to compare the situation of senior managers with that of the astronaut in Stanley Kubrick’s “2001 — A Space Odyssey”. In the science fiction movie, the scientists aboard a spaceship gradually find out that the computer had taken over the mission.
In one of his first meetings with Bayer managers, Anderson played a clip from the film. His message was that “the astronaut is us, and we are no longer in control” but at the same time, the system “often is fundamentally flawed”.
Which reminds me of the doctors and nurses stuck within the hull that is the NHS, directed in this case by the political masters who lack the guts to actually even set foot on the ship.