Michael Skapinker

From Who Comments? - the encyclopedia of comment & opinion
Jump to: navigation, search


225Replace this image person.png

Full name: Michael Skapinker

Area of interest: Business and Society

Journals/Organisation: Financial Times

Email: michael.skapinker@ft.com

Personal website:

Website: http://www.ft.com/management/michael-skapinker



Networks: https://twitter.com/#!/skapinker | http://uk.linkedin.com/pub/michael-skapinker/31/551/12a



Education: University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg: BA in Law; Queens’ College, Cambridge: Masters degree

Career: CBS Radio News and Independent Radio News: Athens correspondent; McGraw-Hill World News: London Bureau; International Management Magazine: senior editor; joined the Financial Times in 1986: management writer, aerospace correspondent, leisure industry correspondent and electronics writer, became editor of the FT’s weekend edition, 2005/2007

Current position/role: Assistant Editor, Columnist, editor FT special reports

  • also writes/written for:

Other roles/Main role:

Other activities: Was a member of the UK department for culture, media and sport ministerial working party on business tourism to Britain



Broadcast media:

Video: Consultant on the BBC series 'The Secrets of Leadership', broadcast 2003





Books & Debate:

Latest work:



Financial Times:

Column name:

Remit/Info: Business and Society


Role: Assistant Editor and columnist


Email: michael.skapinker@ft.com

Website: FT.com / Michael Skapinker

Commissioning editor:

Day published: Tuesday (in print)

Regularity: Weekly

Column format:

Average length:

Articles: 2016

Articles: 2015

Articles: 2014

Articles: 2013

Articles: 2012

Articles: 2011

Articles: 2010

Articles: 2009

Articles: 2008

  • Unfounded panics and unexpected disasters - A desire to predict the future is an ancient human trait but we are no good at it. The Oracle was vague for a reason - 23rd December 2008
  • What Baby P tells us about organisations - While the outcome is shocking, the mistakes leading to Baby P’s killing were a depressingly ordinary example of casual incompetence - 9th December 2008
  • Web musings deserve their place in history - Anyone studying our time will want to know what was on the internet, the transforming technology of our day - 2nd December 2008
  • The search for work-life balance goes offshore - Most of the Australian navy has a two-month break over Christmas because the navy is desperate to retain staff. Yet in many other sectors employers now have the upper hand - 25th November 2008
  • Every fool knows it’s a job for government - With the market having failed to restrain managers, it is no surprise that people have turned to the one institution they think can - 18th November 2008
  • We have not seen the last of the older leader - Quickness of mind is not everything. Depth of thought matters and there is evidence the youth have less of it - 11th November 2008
  • A dose of austerity for a pampered generation - In the past, employers have competed furiously for staff, and baby boomers’ children could name their price - 4th November 2008
  • An ethics lesson from an unlikely quarter - Wal-Mart’s notion of ‘sustainability’ has proved a sophisticated way to cut costs - 28th October 2008
  • Our sorry need for others to apologise - In every area of life, we try to justify our behaviour when it contradicts the way we see ourselves - 21st October 2008
  • Remember the little ones at the bottom - obsession with ‘numbers’ has led to the stripping away of employee benefits and the disappearance of staff who cared about the customers - 14th October 2008
  • Why fallen titans are more hated in America - In the UK, everyone is a social democrat now. In the US, by contrast, the argument over the role of the state in the market is still going strong - 7th October 2008
  • Do not write off New York and London - One day, with new rules in place, companies will return to raising funds, banks to lending and financiers to making money - 30th September 2008
  • People are in mutinous mood - A jury was wrong to acquit Greenpeace activists who vandalised a power station, but in this climate business should brace itself for similar verdicts - 23rd September 2008
  • Pay-to-dig is the answer for holes in the road - It often seems utilities dig holes just to reserve them for later: the public works equivalent of a towel on a sunlounger - 9th September 2008
  • A British invasion conquers a heroic isle - Zakynthos deserves better than the visitors it gets. But the drunken British louts have willing local accomplices - 2nd September 2008
  • A word in your ear: keep it slow and simple - How many words would a non-native speaker need to understand simplified English? The answer is: fewer than 1,000 - 26th August 2008
  • The luggage revolution that passed me by - Everyone except me had a proper wheeled suitcase this summer. Even the backpacks had wheels on them - 18th August 2008
  • Why global tourism campaigns do not travel - The more sophisticated holiday companies segment their market, appealing to different groups in different ways - 21st July 2008
  • Politicians should adopt a business-like approach - When customer tastes shift, so do companies. Politicians who change policies to suit the public mood look unprincipled - 14th July 2008
  • Why companies and campaigners collaborate - Companies hope personal relationships with campaigners will give them time to prepare a response before they are criticised - 7th July 2008
  • The plain and simple truth about jargon - The Local Government Association spokesman was buzzing over an interview he had just given to Canadian radio about his organisation’s 100 banned words or phrases... - 30th June 2008
  • The machine that spun the world around - Publishers see world-changers everywhere. There is a book called Tea: The Drink That Changed the World. There is Cod: A Biography of the Fish That Changed the World and that paean to Japanese motor manufacturing The Machine That Changed the World - 23rd June 2008
  • If the old refuse to die, let them work longer - Administrators of company pension funds worry about investment performance and intrusive regulators. But nothing bothers them as much as their members’ refusal to die - 16th June 2008
  • Why can employees not sell their iPhones? - Steve Jobs, the chief executive of Apple, unveiled a new version of Apple’s iPhone on Monday. Unfortunately, some of the phone’s most effective marketers are not around to sell it because they have been fired - 9th June 2008
  • Competition is the only way to pick a boss - This newspaper’s search for the best business book ever has thrown up Jim Collins’ Good to Great and Clayton Christensen’s The Innovator’s Dilemma, among others - 2nd June 2008
  • Buffett, other cultures and the trust question - Some view 77 as an age too old to be trying something new, but Warren Buffett, who says he will retire five years after his death, last week launched the hunt for his first European acquisition - 26th May 2008
  • Apartheid is too much for American justice - Three weeks ago I wrote that China, with its poor human rights record, had a habit of making western companies wriggle. Apartheid and its legacy have been doing the same for decades – and have now made the US legal system look silly - 19th May 2008
  • The world needs a workable air travel tax - Rooting about for Mediterranean holiday possibilities on the Expedia website recently, I came across a flight for £300. About half of that was the fare; the rest was labelled “taxes and fees” - 5th May 2008
  • How to do guilt-free business with Beijing - China has a habit of making western companies wriggle. There was Google – slogan: “Don’t be evil” – squirming over its decision to self-censor its Chinese website - 28th April 2008
  • Virtue’s reward? Companies make the business case for ethical initiatives - Comment & Analysis, 27th April 2008
  • e jury is out on family life and the law - Law clients everywhere will no doubt have been thrilled by this newspaper’s report on Friday of a judge lambasting the level of fees charged by the law firm that represented Research in Motion, the makers of BlackBerry, in a patent dispute - 21st April 2008
  • Perils of multi-client public relations agencies - If you want a public relations adviser who can sniff out trouble before it happens then it seems Mark Penn, who was fired last week as Hillary Clinton’s chief strategist, is not your man - 14th April 2008
  • We are seeing a generational literacy shift - On the BBC’s Dateline London programme recently, two foreign correspondents took issue with the idea that the British did not like children. The problem, said Franck Guillory of Le Journal du Dimanche, was that they liked them too much, treating them like grown-ups when what they needed was discipline - 7th April 2008]
  • The wrongs and rights of naming rights - No one upstaged Carla Bruni-Sarkozy during her visit to London last week, but Arsenal’s Emirates stadium did not do badly - 31st March 2008
  • The market no longer has all the answers - One of the most arresting comments of the past week came from Josef Ackermann, chief executive of Deutsche Bank. “I no longer believe in the market’s self-healing power,” he said in a speech in Frankfurt - 24th March 2008
  • The battle for global business is not yet won - EADS, the European defence company, has beaten Boeing to win a huge US Air Force order. And, as of May, Unilever will not have a British or Dutch member of its top executive team for the first time since the company was formed by an Anglo-Dutch merger in 1930 - 18th March 2008
  • Doctors, drugs and alternative therapies - When I was a child at summer camp, an epidemic of home-sickness broke out. Several campers presented themselves to the resident medic, who talked to them gently and asked who they were missing most. Those who were pining for their mothers got a pink-coated chocolate. Those missing their fathers (an apparently less virulent condition), received a blue one. From what I observed, the treatment was highly effective - 10th March 2008
  • Air miles that add up to a flight of fancy - The return of Prince Harry from Afghanistan took the glare off Michael Martin, Speaker of the House of Commons, but the UK’s weekend papers did not entirely let go of the controversy over his expenses - 3rd March 2008
  • Nature and nurture in the executive suite - Women are calmer than men. They are more collaborative and they disdain self-promotion. It is all in their genes - 25th February 2008
  • How to avoid being quoted out of context - Bart Becht, chief executive of Reckitt Benckiser, appeared in a newspaper last week describing some of his company’s innovations as “very stupid” - 18th February 2008
  • Corporate responsibility is not quite dead - Is corporate social responsibility dead? Yes, says Harvard Business Review’s “Conversation Starter” blog. CSR will increasingly be seen as a public relations sham, the bloggers say - 11th February 2008
  • We must stop throwing our gizmos away - Some time in the next few weeks I plan to take a personal computer, a laptop, a DVD player, a television set and three mobile phones to my local recycling centre. It is a task I have been avoiding for months, but we need the cupboard space - 4th February 2008
  • Chief execs should learn the art of oratory - There are so many lawyers crammed into London’s International Dispute Resolution Centre that there is almost no room for anyone else - 28th January 2008
  • How to make sure your gym does not close - The northern winter still has a way to run, but already there are signs of hope. The days are lengthening, the daffodils have poked their heads above the ground and you can once again have a lane to yourself in the swimming pool - 21st January 2008
  • Stolen property finds a ready online market - A few weeks ago I turned on my car radio, to be greeted by a voice that dissolved into static. I tried a music station: it buzzed noisily. I thought I knew why. I pulled over and got out of the car. My aerial was gone - 14th January 2008
  • Why business ignores the business schools - The three Democratic front-runners in the US presidential primary campaigns are lawyers. Even the spouses of Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and John Edwards are lawyers. Mike Huckabee and John McCain are not lawyers, but Rudy Giuliani and Fred Thompson are - 8th January 2008

News & updates: