Review of The Peter Principle

Looking for the book?
We have the summary! Get the key insights in just 10 minutes.

The Peter Principle book summary
Start getting smarter:
or see our plans


9 Overall

9 Applicability

10 Innovation

8 Style


Laurence J. Peter remade management tactics and perceptions forever when he and co-author Raymond Hull first published this funny, best-selling business classic in 1969. The title became the standard description of the pervasive, almost ineradicable management problem they describe: If you – or anyone else – perform well at your job, you will get promoted, but there’s a catch. Your first promotion is likely to move you to a position that demands most of the same skills you used at your previous position. If you do well at your new job, you will get promoted again. Each time you get promoted, your new position will require fewer and fewer of the skills, perceptions, habits or managerial abilities that enabled you to shine at your first job. At some point in this cycle of recurring promotion, you will get promoted into a job for which you aren’t prepared and can’t perform. You will “rise to [your] level of incompetence.” And there you will stay.

About the Authors

Laurence J. Peter (1919-1990) held an EdD from Washington State University. His other books include The Peter Prescription and The Peter Pyramid. Raymond Hull (1919-1985) was a Canadian playwright, television screenwriter and lecturer. He is known for the saying “He who trims himself to suit everyone will soon whittle himself away.”


Get the key points from this book in 10 minutes.

For you

Find the right subscription plan for you.

For your company

We help you build a culture of continuous learning.

 or log in

Comment on this recommendation

More on this topic

Customers who read this also read

More by category