Book Summary: Good To Great


Explore what goes into a company's transformation from mediocre to excellent. Based on hard evidence and volumes of data, the book author (Jim Collins) and his team uncover timeless principles on how the good-to-great companies like Abbott, Circuit City, Fannie Mae, Gillette, Kimberly-Clark, Kroger, Nucor, Philip Morris, Pitney Bowes, Walgreens, and Wells Fargo produced sustained great results and achieved enduring greatness, evolving into companies that were indeed 'Built to Last'.

The Collins team selected 2 sets of comparison companies:

a. Direct comparisons - Companies in the same industry with the same resources and opportunities as the good-to-great group but showed no leap in performance, which were: Upjohn, Silo, Great Western, Warner-Lambert, Scott Paper, A&P, Bethlehem Steel, RJ Reynolds, Addressograph, Eckerd, and Bank of America.

b. Unsustained comparisons - Companies that made a short-term shift from good to great but failed to maintain the trajectory, namely: Burroughs, Chrysler, Harris, Hasbro, Rubbermaid, and Teledyne

Wisdom In A Nutshell:

a. Ten out of eleven good-to-great company leaders or CEOs came from the inside. They were not outsiders hired in to 'save' the company. They were either people who worked many years at the company or were members of the family that owned the company.

b. Strategy per se did not separate the good to great companies from the comparison groups.

c. Good-to-great companies focus on what Not to do and what they should stop doing.

d. Technology has nothing to do with the transformation from good to great. It may help accelerate it but is not the cause of it.

e. Mergers and acquisitions do not cause a transformation from good to great.

f. Good-to-great companies paid little attention to managing change or motivating people. Under the right conditions, these problems naturally go away.

g. Good-to-great transformations did not need any new name, tagline, or launch program. The leap was in the performance results, not a revolutionary process.

h. Greatness is not a function of circumstance; it is clearly a matter of conscious choice.

i. Every good-to-great company had "Level 5" leadership during pivotal transition years, where Level 1 is a Highly Capable Individual, Level 2 is a Contributing Team Member, Level 3 is the Competent Manager, Level 4 is an Effective Leader, and Level 5 is the Executive who builds enduring greatness through a paradoxical blend of personal humility and professional will.

j. Level 5 leaders display a compelling modesty, are self-effacing and understated. In contrast, two thirds of the comparison companies had leaders with gargantuan personal egos that contributed to the demise or continued mediocrity of the company.

k. Level 5 leaders are fanatically driven, infected with an incurable need to produce sustained results. They are resolved to do whatever it takes to make the company great, no matter how big or hard the decisions.

l. One of the most damaging trends in recent history is the tendency (especially of boards of directors) to select dazzling, celebrity leaders and to de-select potential Level 5 leaders.

m. Potential Level 5 leaders exist all around us, we just have to know what to look for.

n. The research team was not looking for Level 5 leadership, but the data was overwhelming and convincing. The Level 5 discovery is an empirical, not ideological, finding.

o. Before answering the "what" questions of vision and strategy, ask first "who" are the right people for the team.

p. Comparison companies used layoffs much more than the good-to-great companies. Although rigorous, the good-to-great companies were never ruthless and did not rely on layoffs or restructuring to improve performance.

q. Good-to-great management teams consist of people who debate vigorously in search of the best answers, yet who unify behind decisions, regardless of parochial interests.

r. There is no link between executive compensation and the shift from good to great. The purpose of compensation is not to 'motivate' the right behaviors from the wrong people, but to get and keep the right people in the first place.

s. The old adage "People are your most important asset" is wrong. People are not your most important asset. The right people are.

t. Whether someone is the right person has more to do with character and innate capabilities than specific knowledge, skills or experience.

u. The Hedgehog Concept is a concept that flows from the deep understanding about the intersection of the following three circles:

1.What you can be best in the world at, realistically, and what you cannot be best in the world at

2.What drives your economic engine

3.What you are deeply passionate about

v. Discover your core values and purpose beyond simply making money and combine this with the dynamic of preserve the core values - stimulate progress, as shown for example by Disney. They have evolved from making short animated films, to feature length films, to theme parks, to cruises, but their core values of providing happiness to young and old, and not succumbing to cynicism remains strong.

w. Enduring great companies don't exist merely to deliver returns to shareholders. In a truly great company, profits and cash flow are absolutely essential for life, but they are not the very point of life.

"IF YOU'RE DOING SOMETHING YOU CARE DEEPLY ABOUT AND IF YOU BELIEVE IN IT, IT'S IMPOSSIBLE TO IMAGINE NOT TRYING TO MAKE IT GREAT."

By: Regine P. Azurin and Yvette Pantilla http://www.bizsum.com "A Lot Of Great Books....Too Little Time To Read" Free Book Summaries Of Latest Bestsellers and More!

mailto:freenewsletter@bizsum.com BusinessSummaries is a BusinessSummaries.com service.

(c) Copyright 2001-2005, BusinessSummaries.com">BusinessSummaries.com

Regine Azurin is the President of a company that provides business book summaries of the latest bestsellers for busy executives and entrepreneurs.


MORE RESOURCES:
In what has become an annual rite under the Trump administration, the president's fiscal year 2020 budget proposal calls for the elimination of the National Endowment for the Arts. Trump's initial budgets for both fiscal 2018 and 2019 also called for cutting the NEA, but each time the House restored funds for the organization and last year gave the NEA a $3 million increase.

According to researchers, the English language might never have enjoyed a richness of F-words had it not been for early farmers and the food processing they favored. Dairy products and other soft foods, such as gruel, porridge, soup and stews, helped shape our faces, the researchers claim, and allowed us to form the sounds "f" and "v", known as labiodental fricatives...

After skipping 2018's announcement due to scandal, the Nobel Foundation has announced that the Nobel Prize in Literature will be awarded in 2019 - and that Laureates will be announced for both 2018 and 2019.

According to the press release: "During the past year, the Nobel Foundation has had a close dialogue with the Swedish Academy about the problems that arose in late 2017 and early 2018. Several important changes have been implemented since then. The Academy's regulations have been amended, making it possible for members to resign. The statutes have been clarified. Several new members have been elected. The Academy also no longer includes any members who are subject to conflict of interest or criminal investigations."

The longlist for The Women's Prize for Fiction 2019 have been announced. The winner will be declared in June.

The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker
Remembered by Yvonne Battle-Felton
My Sister, the Serial Killer Oyinkan Braithwaite
The Pisces Melissa Broder
Milkman Anna Burns
Freshwater Akwaeke Emezi
Ordinary People Diana Evans
Swan Song Kelleigh Greenberg-Jephcott
An American Marriage Tayari Jones
Number One Chinese Restaurant Lillian Li
Bottled Goods Sophie van Llewyn
Lost Children Archive Valeria Luiselli
Praise Song for the Butterflies Bernice L. McFadden
Circe Madeline Miller
Ghost Wall Sarah Moss
Normal People by Sally Rooney

Across America, small theaters are canceling productions of Harper Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird," citing a threat of litigation from a powerful, sharp-elbowed Broadway producer related to a contract that dates back half a century.

The theaters were planning to stage an adaptation of the novel by the playwright Christopher Sergel, which has been widely staged by adults and students for decades. Lawyers for the producer Scott Rudin, backed by the Lee estate, are telling the theaters that their productions are no longer permissible because there is a new adaptation, by the screenwriter Aaron Sorkin, which opened on Broadway in December...

The Guardian has a fun article on Susan Rennie's book, Roald Dahl's Rotsome and Repulsant Words, which is worth a read for all Dahl fans, and particularly lovers of his 1982 classic, The BFG:

If a small child were to walk up to the lexicographer Susan Rennie in the street and call her a slopgroggled grobsquiffler, she would know exactly how to reply. "You squinky squiddler!" she would shout. "You piffling little swishfiggler! You troggy little twit! Don't you dare talk pigsquiffle to me, you prunty old pogswizzler!" ...

Silicon Valley billionaire, philanthropist and author Michael Moritz and his wife Harriet Heyman's charitable foundation has been announced as the new sponsor of the Booker prize, a month after the Man Group revealed it was ending its 18-year sponsorship of the prestigious award for literary fiction.

Moritz and Heyman's foundation, Crankstart, has committed to an initial five-year exclusive funding term for the Booker, with an option to renew for a further five years. It will not give its name to the award, which will revert to its old name of the Booker prize from 1 June, when the Man Group's sponsorship ends.

We are pleased to announce the publication of The Inner Lives of Book Clubs!

This fascinating report is the first to really get to the heart of the book club experience. It's the result of two surveys of more than 5,500 people, combined with BookBrowse's more than 15 years of book club experience and research.

Its 56-pages are packed with interesting and usable information that is relevant to librarians, authors, publishers, booksellers and, of course, book clubs.

Among much else, you will discover:

  • The attributes most successful book groups share.
  • The demographics of public book clubs compared to private groups.
  • What people want from their book club.
  • The elements book clubs look for when picking books.
  • The 12 most common book club challenges, and how groups resolve them.
  • The link between discussion length and happiness.
  • The percentage of book clubs that use library book bags.
  • What people interested in a book club but not in one want from a group
  • What causes people to leave book clubs.

Prolific author William E. Butterworth III, who wrote under the name W.E.B. Griffin, has died aged 89.

The writer Andrea Levy, who explored the experience of Jamaican British people in a series of novels over 20 years has died, aged 62, from cancer.

After starting to write as a hobby in her early 30s, Levy published three novels in the 1990s that brought her positive reviews and steady sales. But her fourth novel, Small Island, launched her into the literary big league, winning the 2004 Orange prize, the Whitbread book of the year and the Commonwealth Writers' prize, selling more than 1m copies around the world and inspiring a 2009 BBC adaptation.

thatware.org ©