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Preview — Great by Choice by James C. Collins
Great by Choice: Uncertainty, Chaos, and Luck--Why Some Thrive Despite Them All
The new question: Ten years after the worldwide bestseller "Good to Great," Jim Collins returns to ask: Why do some companies thrive in uncertainty, even chaos, and others do not? In "Great by Choice," Collins and his colleague, Morten T. Hansen, enumerate the principles for building a truly great enterprise in unpredictable, tumultuous, and fast-moving times.
The new st...more
What were some of the most shocking / memorable incidents you can recollect since the last 10 years?
• The Financial Meltdown? Lehman Brothers? Billions getting wiped out?
• The iPod, iPad, iPhone revolution?
A lot has happened in the last 10 years.
Giants who were invincible are now forever invisible.
The corporations with abundant financial health are today on a dying life support system.
The mortal legends whom we always remembered have become the immortal legacies we will never forget.
So mu ...more
In a quote from the book jacket, Great by Choice is the result of a study of "companies that rose to greatness - beating their industry indexes by a minimum of ten times over fifteen years - in environments characterized by big forces and rapid shifts that leaders could not predict or control." According to the authors, the ...more
I liked the point that one of the most important forms of luck is ...more
The core concept of the book revolves around preparin ...more
Jim Collins breaks it down into 5 basic strategies:
20 Mile March
Fire Bullets, Then Cannonballs
Leading above the Death Line
The two that were most memorable and important to me (though they are all intertwined in the end) are:
Fire bullets, then cannonballs and SMac.
The bullets / cannonballs analogy has to do with responding to opportunities. The great companie ...more
I love when I read a book, and it inspires me to read other books. I've never wanted to read about the race to the South Pole, but now I do. Climbing Everest, never interested me before, now I'm adding books to my queue.
The biggest takeaway from this book is that preparation is important. You can't be prepared for every disaster, but being ready for *A* disaster will help you su ...more
Three concepts dominate: productive paranoia, empirical creativity, and fanatic discipline, which are bound in the middle by ambitious leaders. Producti ...more
This feeling stayed with me for most of the book: Things he talks about AMD vs Intel and about Micr ...more
SPOILER ALERT: I chose to give the following synopsis as part of ...more
This time around Jim is joined by University of California Berkeley Business Professor Morten Hansen as they work to answer the question, "Why do some companies thrive in uncertainty, even chaos, and others do not?" To answer this question both Collins and Morten use the matched-pair case method in which they pair a 10Xer or high fl ...more
This isn't exactly a page turner. It's an analysis of corporations and some opinions on what made them successful while their competitors struggled in the same situations. Framed from the perspective of corporations, the advice loses its human value and becomes a chore to take in. If you want to build the next big giant company, these might be some guidelines to start from. Those aren't part of my personal goals, so the advice is hard to relate ...more
Collins and Hansen make compelling arguments as to why certain companies (of similar industry, age, and circumstances as their counterparts) outperform others over 10 times. These companies (called the 10xers) possess certain traits that have resulted in success.
Fanatic Discipline (demonstrating the same level of discipline through good times and bad to maintain a level-headed approach to ...more
Fanatic discipline(process), Empirical creativity (thinking) and productive paranoia(planning)
Hence a nice back to the basic book..
In this project, he and his co-author, Morton Hamilton, examine how companies fare and even thrive in industries that are rife with uncertainty, chaos, and wild changes. They then found the common characteristics of those companies that helped them exceed their industry average by more than 10X.
I enjoyed hearing how companies took their futures into their own hands. I enjoyed hearing how they ...more
The research in this book is so extensive (a major strength) that the data researched ends in 2002 (a bit of a disappointment). I found myself often reminding myself of that 9 year gap as a read – because the fortunes and trajectories of many of the companies researched have changed drastically since 2002 ( ...more
Jim Collins is a student and teacher of enduring great companies — how they grow, how they attain superior performance, and how good companies can become great companies. Having invested over a decade of research into the topic, Jim has authored or co-authored four books, i ...more