Good to Great Book Review
To transform a good company to great company is all manages' dream, but only few of them make it. To find out the core factors which lead to a good company became a great company is very difficult, because in different era, different industry companies face different opportunities and threats. To begin the research for the Good-to-Great study, Jim Collins and his research team searched for companies that: performed at or below the general stock market for at least fifteen years; then at a transition point began to pull away from the competition, and sustained returns of at least 3 times the general market for the next fifteen years. He started with a list of 1,435 companies and found eleven that met his criteria. These eleven companies produced, on average, a return of 6.9 times the general stock market during the 15 years following the transition points. Collins chose a 15-year span to avoid "one-hit wonders" and lucky breaks. In the book, Collins highlights some important factors which are the result of the research. They are level 5 leadership, fist who
then what, confront the brutal facts, the hedgehog concept, culture of discipline, and technology accelerators, (Collins, 2001, p.12). According to Wheelen & Hunger, strategic management "is that set of managerial decisions and actions that determines the long-run performance of a corporation. It includes environmental scanning (both external and internal), strategy formulation (strategic or long-range planning), strategy implementation, and evaluation and control" (2004, p2). All eleven good to great companies are benefit from strategic management and gain long term strategic advantage then lead to outperforming compared companies. The first factor is level 5 leadership. A leader is the soul of the company. Base on the research, every good-to-great company had level 5 leaders during the pivotal transition years. In the book, level 5 leaders embody a paradoxical blend of personal humility and professional will (Collins, 2001, p.13). Darwin E. Smith is an example of lever 5 leasers. Smith transforms Kimberly-Clark into the leading paper-based consumer products company in the world within twenty years. Generated cumulative stocks return 4.1 times the general market, furthermore beating its direct rivals Procter & Gamble and Scott Paper. Level 5 leaderships' ambition is first and foremost for the institution, not themselves. After environmental scanning and industry analysis Smith announced the decision to sell the mills, very few people understand that, but in the long-run it is the most important turning point of the company. Another important character of level 5 leadership is the window and the mirror concept. Level 5 leaders look out the window to apportion credit to factors outside themselves when things go well (and if they cannot find a specific person or event to give credit to, they credit good luck). At the same time, they look in the mirror to apportion responsibility, never blaming bad luck when things go poorly (Collins, 2001, p.35). In other words, level 5 leaders are very modesty. The level 5 leaders were seemingly ordinary people quietly producing unordinary results. Compared with Kimberly-Clark's CEO, Scott Paper's CEO, Al Dunlap, called himself a nickname: Rambo in Pinstripes in his book after selling off the company and pocketing his quick millions dollar within 603 days leading Scott Paper. The second factor are staffing (first who
then what). Some companies decided what to do then choose appropriate people to do the job. It like a genius point out the direction and thousand helpers help him to go there. The book show us a different way which is select right people on the bus and get the wrong people off it then start to find out where to go with these right people. That is opposite with our common sense, but this factor very helps companies from good to great. Bank of America versus Wells Fargo is the perfect...
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