Built to Last, the defining management study of the nineties, showed how great companies triumph over time and how long-term sustained performance can be engineered into the DNA of an enterprise from the verybeginning.
But what about the company that is not born with great DNA? How can good companies, mediocre companies, even bad companies achieve enduring greatness?
For years, this question preyed on the mind of Jim Collins. Are there companies that defy gravity and convert long-term mediocrity or worse into long-term superiority? And if so, what are the universal distinguishing characteristics that cause a company to go from good to great?
Using tough benchmarks, Collins and his research team identified a set of elite companies that made the leap to great results and sustained those results for at least fifteen years. How great? After the leap, the good-to-great companies generated cumulative stock returns that beat the general stock market by an average of seven times in fifteen years, better than twice the results delivered by a composite index of the world's greatest companies, including Coca-Cola, Intel, General Electric, and Merck.
The research team contrasted the good-to-great companies with a carefully selected set of comparison companies that failed to make the leap from good to great. What was different? Why did one set of companies become truly great performers while the other set remained only good?
Over five years, the team analyzed the histories of all twenty-eight companies in the study. After sifting through mountains of data and thousands of pages of interviews, Collins and his crew discovered the key determinants of greatness -- why some companies make the leap and others don't.
The findings of the Good to Great study will surprise many readers and shed light on virtually every area of management strategy and practice. The findings include:
Level 5 Leaders: The research team was shocked to discover the type of leadership required to achieve greatness.
The Hedgehog Concept: (Simplicity within the Three Circles): To go from good to great requires transcending the curse of competence.
A Culture of Discipline: When you combine a culture of discipline with an ethic of entrepreneurship, you get the magical alchemy of great results. Technology Accelerators: Good-to-great companies think differently about the role of technology.
The Flywheel and the Doom Loop: Those who launch radical change programs and wrenching restructurings will almost certainly fail to make the leap.
“Some of the key concepts discerned in the study,” comments Jim Collins, "fly in the face of our modern business culture and will, quite frankly, upset some people.”
The Balanced Scorecard translates a company's vision and strategy into a coherent set of performance measures. The four perspectives of the scorecard--financial measures, customer knowledge, internal business processes, and learning and growth--offer a balance between short-term and long-term objectives, between outcomes desired and performance drivers of those outcomes, and between hard objective measures and softer, more subjective measures. In the first part, Kaplan and Norton provide the theoretical foundations for the Balanced Scorecard; in the second part, they describe the steps organizations must take to build their own Scorecards; and, finally, they discuss how the Balanced Scorecard can be used as a driver of change.More info →
Most organizations consist of multiple business and support units, each populated by highly trained, experienced executives. But often the efforts of individual units are not coordinated, resulting in conflicts, lost opportunities, and diminished performance.
Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton argue that the responsibility for this critical alignment lies with corporate headquarters. In this book, the authors apply their revolutionary Balanced Scorecard management system to corporate-level strategy, revealing how highly successful enterprises achieve powerful synergies by explicitly defining corporate headquarters’ role in setting, coordinating, and overseeing organizational strategy.
Based on extensive field research in organizations worldwide, Alignment shows how companies can build an enterprise-level Strategy Map and Balanced Scorecard that clearly articulate the “enterprise value proposition”: how the enterprise creates value above that achieved by individual business units operating alone. The book provides case studies, actionable frameworks, and sample scorecards that show how to align business and support units, boards of directors, and external partners with the corporate strategy and create a governance process that will ensure that alignment is sustained.
The next breakthrough in strategy execution from the field’s premier thinkers, Alignment shows how today’s companies can unlockMore info →