consistently great companies -outstanding leadership

GOOD TO GREAT came about from an extensive study of Fortune 500 companies by Jim Collins and his graduate student researchers resulting in an interesting collection of a few coherent but largely predictable conclusions. One of the few surprises is the relatively dowdy-seeming companies who actually performed well where many of the household “go-go” companies didn’t make the cut.Reported are 11 firms that had outperformed the market by at least a factor of 3 consistently for at least 15From this the researchers uncovered a core set of success factors largely present in the Greats and missing from the not Greats:Outstanding leadership on a continuing basis following the same vision & mission (not necessarily the same person, but staying largely on the same direction). Start and maintain the necessary changes.

First Who than What – the right people on the bus in the right seats

Have honest facts to evaluate, but keep faith in success from competency (not wishful thinking) – encourage and use healthy debate.

The Hedgehog Concept – Simplicity Within the Three Circles (the intersection of What you’re deeply passionate about, What drives your economic engine and What you can be the best in the world in). Tied into this is insight into your economic engine “what is your denominator” more appropriately what do you measure and what do you measure it against; the key metric is not always obvious. This might be sales per employee (Abbott), sales per local population (Kroger), profit per customer visit (Walgreens), or profit per mortgage risk level (Fannie Mae)

The culture of discipline having honest and disciplined people eliminates the need for hierarchy or oppressive rules.

Use technology appropriately to advance your mission, not as your core competence.

The Flywheel and Doom Loop – Overcome inertia and maintain the effort – recognize that it takes time and effort applied in a consistent direction to get things going faster and faster; if the effort wanes or the direction changes, momentum is lost.