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Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap...And Others Don't

4.04  ·  Rating Details ·  87,820 Ratings  ·  3,074 Reviews
The Challenge
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 gre
ebook, 320 pages
Published July 19th 2011 by HarperBusiness (first published January 1st 2001)
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Riku Sayuj
Sep 18, 2011 Riku Sayuj rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Nishant Singh
Recommended to Riku by: Prof. Neerja Pande
Shelves: mba-stuff, r-r-rs
First and foremost, Good to Great has no breakthrough concepts to offer. Collins is good at inventive metaphors and catch phrases to push concepts through but ultimately there is really nothing counter-intuitive or revolutionary about the results of this study.

That said, the concepts in the book might still be valuable for managers, CEOs and other professionals. Here is a brief summary of the book and a short tour on how to take your company from Good to Great:

Think of this as a time-line to be
Jul 31, 2008 Jamie rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book by Jim Collins is one of the most successful books to be found in the "Business" section of your local megabookstore, and given how it purports to tell you how to take a merely good company and make it great, it's not difficult to see why that might be so. Collins and his crack team of researchers say they swam through stacks of business literature in search of info on how to pull this feat off, and came up with a list of great companies that illustrate some concepts central to the puz ...more
Chad Kettner
Nov 28, 2011 Chad Kettner rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
Here are Jim Collins' seven characteristics of companies that went "from good to great"

1. Level 5 Leadership: Leaders who are humble, but driven to do what's best for the company.

2. First Who, Then What: Get the right people on the bus, then figure out where to go. Finding the right people and trying them out in different positions.

3. Confront the Brutal Facts: The Stockdale paradox - Confront the brutal truth of the situation, yet at the same time, never give up hope.

4. Hedgehog Concept: Three
Feb 11, 2017 Praveen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
People often ask,"what motivates you to undertake these huge research projects?"
It's a good question. The answer is "curiosity."
There is nothing I find more exciting than picking a question that I don't know the answer to and embarking on a quest for answers. It's deeply satisfying to climb into the boat, like Lewis and Clark, and head west,saying," We don't know what we will find when we get there, but we'll be sure to let you know when we get back."

Though this book is exclusively for the manag
Ahmad Sharabiani
Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap... and Others Don't, James C. Collins
عنوانها: از خوب به عالی؛ از عرش به فرش؛ انتخاب برتری ؛ انتخاب عالی مترجم عهدیه عبادی؛ با انتخاب خود بزرگ شوید؛ با انتخاب خود مهم شوید مترجم: متین عربلو؛ بهتر از خوب مترجم فضل الله امینی؛ تعالی مبنی بر انتخاب صحیح مترجمین: حسن زارعی ثمین، بهزاد محمدیان، مهدی شعله؛ تاریخ نخستین خوانش: بیستم فوریه سال 2006 میلادی
عنوان: از خوب به عالی : چرا برخی از شرکتها جهش میکنند... و سایرین نمیکنند؛ نویسنده: جیم کالینز؛ مترجم: ن
Nov 18, 2007 Allen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Just (12/21/2011) re-read the book and love the concepts. But I knocked a star off of my rating since during this re-read I felt like the author puffed up the findings and, indirectly, himself. Sure, good-to-great principles seem to be true, insightful, and necessary for a transformation. I even found that re-reading this book helped me to realize I was being quite undisciplined in my use of time (trying to create momentum by doing, doing, doing instead of "unplugging extraneous junk.") But I do ...more
Nov 04, 2008 Sandy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
I hope I don't get fired for not thinking this was the greatest book ever. Honestly, business books are not exactly my cup of tea. This book started off really interesting. The author talks about habits that great companies use to keep their companies run smoothly. Many of the suggestions the author gives seem very logical -- don't have negative people work for your company, don't try to put your hand in every pot, don't stop doing things that work well and do stop doing things that aren't worki ...more
Chad Warner
Apr 19, 2009 Chad Warner rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Chad by: Jeff Disher
Shelves: non-fiction, business
I was hoping this book would give me some guidelines to remember when I start my own business. There were a few good points, but nothing compelling. Reading this book wasn't a very good use of my time.

Tips from the book:

First Who, then What
First, get the right people on the bus (and the wrong people off it), then figure out where to drive. Having the right people in the company is more important than deciding what the company will do, because the right people will help make that decision anyway.
Aug 04, 2009 Steve rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have no idea how much Jim Collins knows about business / management, but it is clear he’s mastered the art of writing a popular business / management book. The way I see it, the steps involved are:

* State up front what the themes are, but disguise at least a few of them with cryptic labels that portend greater meaning to those who venture further. Who wouldn’t read on when enticed by the promise of the lowly hedgehog’s secret for success or how Admiral Stockdale’s paradoxical key to survival a
Aug 25, 2007 Deli rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone without common sense
OK, so I'm making my way through this book... painfully, slowly, pyromaniacly.... and, I do have to say it is FANTASTIC if you find yourself surrounded by people without common sense. Of course, I don't have a business degree... oh, wait, I'm not supposed to have common sense.

Anyways, now that I've trailed off into ADD tangents, my boss gave me this book to read and I do like the principles. I have one thing to say: way better than the teaching books I used to have to read. GEESH!
Nov 20, 2014 Angela rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
A five year research study dedicated to analyzing the results of its own sampling bias without realizing it and puffed up with so much unnecessary fluff that the essence of the book could have been distilled on the front cover in a few bullet points under the title and it would have probably still been considered a waste of time to read.
Dan W
Mar 13, 2012 Dan W rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
There is a valuable lesson in this book:

- Books are printed to make someone else money.

With this singular lesson in mind you can now unlock the secrets of all business and marketing books: the lesson isn't printed on the page, it's between the lines. This book sought, as all 'business' books do, to titillate you with facts, get you revved about the possibilities in your life to acquire great and fabulous riches through the magic of 'excellence' and set you loose into the world with your hair on
Feb 18, 2008 Giuliana rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Giuliana by: Alec
Shelves: reviews
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nguyên ngộ ngộ
Những con số biết nói khá thú vị
6000 bài báo
2000 trang phỏng vấn
15.000 giờ làm việc
21 nhà nghiên cứu làm việc suốt 5 năm
1435 công ty được chọn từ danh sách Fortune 500
28 công ty được chắt lọc.
11 công ty nhảy vọt
11 công ty cạnh tranh trực tiếp
6 công ty ngắn ngày

Cuối cùng là, ra đời 1 cuốn sách: TỪ TỐT ĐẾN VĨ ĐẠI.

Quyển sách đã gút chốt được 6 yếu tố chung nhất của một công ty từ tốt đến vĩ đại
(1) Nhà lãnh đạo cấp độ 5
Tính cách đặc trưng kiểu dạng như thầy Giảng Tư Trung, Bác Hồ. Với phong thái đi
Kressel Housman
Good is the enemy of the great. That is the first sentence and thesis of this book. In other words, if you're performing adequately, your motivation to improve yourself can easily be stifled. After all, you're getting by. Why put in all that discipline to go from good to great? But if you want to go from good to great, this book promises you the secrets of doing it.

I guess I'm destined to be merely good because I'm returning this book to the library unfinished. I thought the advice was worth app
Len Vlahos
Apr 15, 2012 Len Vlahos rated it really liked it
I finally got around to reading Good to Great. It more or less lived up to the hype as being both inspirational and instructional. I just have three quick comments:

1. Like many business books, this would be better as a long magazine article instead of a book. The author, while deft, belabors point after point. While it was less true here than in some other business books, it's still longer than it needs to be.

2. A few of the ideas put forth -- e.g., the hedgehog concept, the three circles -- ar
Kathleen Tallent
Feb 21, 2009 Kathleen Tallent rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this in a leadership class and it was very appropriate. I will never be the CEO of a major company, but I will help run a household, participate in a church family, help lead a therapy team, and will have many more opportunities to lead. This book gave a lot of insight into why companies are able to climb in growth and industry, but that same insight can be applied in most of life circumstances where people are grouped together. I recommended this book to multiple people working in large ...more
Aug 01, 2007 Bonnie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Worth reading, because all your colleagues have read it or paid someone to give them the jist of it. :)

If you read this, don't bother with "Built to Last" since much of the content is the reiterated. Ok, so Built to Last is about companies that have lasted over many eras and are still going strong. That's nice - I still feel like that's luck and adaptability, but sometimes, pure diversifation that saved some companies from themselves over the years.

As for Good to Great, it's a bit more of a kic
Ms. Rose
Jul 31, 2014 Ms. Rose rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love that this book is steeped in some serious longitudinal and painstaking research and essentially was written by a team that debated and pushed ideas much further than a single person could have. The book is so accessible, I think, directly as a result of this dynamic. All of the examples are phenomenal and it just makes so much sense. I would have liked it even more had their been more mention of the social/nonprofit sector. For though many ideas apply easily across fields, some ideas were ...more
Tanja Berg
Sep 28, 2014 Tanja Berg rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, business
This book was collecting dust on my shelf for at least a year before I finally got around to it. I thought it would be a hopelessly overwhelming book to read. I could not have been more wrong. This is a very clear, concise and easily understood book. The author and his team spent years understanding why some companies beat the market and others did not. This was done after first having carefully made a selection and the conducted indepth interviews. Then they drew the conclusions into lucid and ...more
May 27, 2011 Nick rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: leadership, own
I found this book interesting on two levels. One was the useful data that Collins and his team provide for what makes some companies truly great. These findings need not apply only to businesses--they can also apply to individuals, churches, etc.

The second level that interested me was all of the history of companies, such as Walgreens, Gillette, and Kroger. It was really neat to see how they got where they are today. Very useful!
May 15, 2007 Kristina rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
If you are looking for sweeping generalizations and a unifying theory of everything, well hey, this offer has all of that and a bridge in Brooklyn that he wants to offer you.

Although this book does have some interesting information, it is also full of relationships that are declared by the author as causal, but may indeed just be coincidental or correlative.
Jun 25, 2017 Ruxandra rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Besides the two most important reminders that this book brought along, the concept of 'level 5 leadership' and the importance of selecting the right people for the job and despite half of the book describing the methodology of their study, the books has a higher ration of trite, if common sense, ideas than strong arguments that can predict success.

The first thing to remember is that excellent leadership is not only about being a servant leader—it's also mandatory that you are a rigorous, ambitio
Amy Neftzger
Apr 16, 2017 Amy Neftzger rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Even though this book is over 10 years old, the concepts are still relevant and provide guidance on how to manage effectively for the long haul. Following the principles can assist with getting better employee engagement and formulating a business strategy designed for success. It's important to note that many of these concepts will take some effort and that there are no "silver bullets" that can suddenly turn a failing company into a great one, however the author does a great job of explaining ...more
Jacek Bartczak
Jun 27, 2017 Jacek Bartczak rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really appreciate an effort which was necessary to prepare conclusions from this book. Simple rules which can help resolve or even avoid many problems which are common in each organization.

Chapters are definitely too long, they could be 3 times shorter. Too often author repeats very similar conclusions so sometimes it makes that book tough to read and boring.
Nguyễn Thuỳ Linh
Bản tiếng anh sẽ đem lại khó khăn nhưng có lẽ sẽ dễ hiểu hơn tiếng việt.
Về nội dung, cuốn sách dường như là một nghiên cứu lớn, chi tiết và nghiêm túc về sự dẫn dầu.
Tôi có học hỏi nhiều điều qua các trang sách, do bố cục rõ ràng và dễ nhớ, nhưng với bản tính của người đã từng nghiên cứu, tôi không khỏi đặt ra những câu hỏi nghi ngờ về tính đúng đắn và xác thực.
Anyway, mỗi cuốn sách đều có thể gợi nên những ý tưởng mà chính nó cũng không tính trước được.
Mar 11, 2017 Soheil rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I normally don't like books that read like a course book! But Good to Great offered a lot of insights for me to put aside my internal biases.

In summary the book is a report on a 5-year research on what make good companies to turn into great companies with sustainable results. The answer is level 5 leadership (strong will + humility) coupled with a process that defines who (get the right people on the bus and the wrong people off it) and what (the hedgehog concept: the intersection between the 3
Mar 18, 2012 Keith rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
Finally read Good to Great, by Jim Collins (yes, I know that I'm a bit behind in my reading, but just never seemed to get around to this one). I thought it was good (not great) in that it didn't really tell me anything that wasn't pretty obvious. Furthermore, there is a lot of peril in identifying "great" companies that then go on to stumble (Circuit City, Fannie Mae, Pitney Bowes). I know that Collins would say that these companies stopped following those things that made them great, but that b ...more
Sep 19, 2012 Jay rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business, audiobook
There are many great reviews of this book that summarize its message in a few sentences, and that's one of the strengths of the book -- its messages are few, have memorable names for the concepts, and make sense. But in general, they can be boiled down to platitudes, and they mostly make common sense. Worrying is that rigor is applied to determine the causes of becoming great, yet causality isn't proved but implied. This reminds me of another book I read in business school that did the same kind ...more
This book studied a series of companies that made the leap from good to great, comparing them with similar companies that did not make the leap. The researchers found reasons, beginning with what they call Level-5 leadership, for why these companies became great. Though written about businesses, the principles in this book can easily be applied to any sort of leadership.

That said, about halfway through I moved into skimming because the main points are highlighted and much of the surrounding book
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“When [what you are deeply passionate about, what you can be best in the world at and what drives your economic engine] come together, not only does your work move toward greatness, but so does your life. For, in the end, it is impossible to have a great life unless it is a meaningful life. And it is very difficult to have a meaningful life without meaningful work. Perhaps, then, you might gain that rare tranquility that comes from knowing that you’ve had a hand in creating something of intrinsic excellence that makes a contribution. Indeed, you might even gain that deepest of all satisfactions: knowing that your short time here on this earth has been well spent, and that it mattered.” 94 likes
“The purpose of bureaucracy is to compensate for incompetence and lack of discipline.” 66 likes
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