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.
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.
3.5 stars, really.
The authors pick a number of companies that outperform the market by 10x or more and compare them to a similar companies that don't. Examples are Intel vs. AMD, Microsoft vs. Apple (before Steve Jobs' return), Southwest vs. Pacific Southwest and so on. The key insights map ...more
I liked the point that one of the most important forms of luck is ...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, ...more
I tried out a few books about success before - but this one by experienced researchers of enterprise success is just so much better. First of all, it is not only based on a personal story (10X Rule) or just a subjective choice to support authors point (Bold), it is based on data coming from thorough comparative analysis of enterprises dealing with very specific market conditions. Second, the authors ...more
So that's my last book written by Jim Collins. It might be the best one. The book is about how to deal with uncertainty in business, sums up the attitude of business leaders, the framework of testing, avoiding risk, and planning.
Highly actionable, I've read it in 24 hours. Highly recommended.
However, key things I took for myself:
1. Level 5 ambition leaders:
- passionately driven for a cause beyond themselves;
- doing it not for themselves, for the company (channel their ego to smth bigger than they)
2. Empirical Creativity:
- fire bullets, not cannibals (this idea intersects with SCRUM (Sutherland), Lean Startup (Ries), 4 Steps for Epiphany (Steve Blank)
"Great by choice" presents a set of conclusions which:
- clarify the impact of factors like the luck preparation etc.,
- are easy to understand but hard to sustain on daily basis when you are tired, overwhelmed by duties or cannot think 100% clearly because of emotions.
The story about Andy Groove - the masterpiece which mind-blowed my thinking about how deeply things can be analysed.
This book demonstrates that luck does not create success. Innovation does not create success. Action and discipline are required. Indeed, the successful have three characteristics: Fanatic discipline, Empirical creativity and Productive paranoia.
In other words, hard work, data-based decision making and preparing for the worst are enabling forces for achievement.
Considering all the stuff about the fourth industrial revolution and the creative economy, this book demonstrates ...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 ...more
The book is easy going and quick to devour. Would recommend for those who seek to manage themselves well and to be reminded of the laws of nature and psychology in a nice package.
Expect no huge revelations or large innovations - but also enjoy the logic and a good flow of narrative around the subject.
I definitely recommend this book to business owners or people who want to start own company.
SPOILER ALERT: I chose to give the following synopsis as part of ...more
Some notes on “Great by Choice” of Jim Collins and Morten Hansen
Although this book has been written some years ago, the title is still thought provoking and readers like me that come across this book years after its publication cannot help it but see how applicable is the advice offered by the book not only to companies but also to individuals. Now let’s take a look at the notes related to each chapter.
The three attributes have been mentioned in this ...more
The core concept of the book revolves around ...more
This feeling stayed with me for most of the book: Things he talks about AMD vs Intel and about ...more
Three concepts dominate: productive paranoia, empirical creativity, and fanatic discipline, which are bound in the middle by ambitious leaders. ...more
The book probes this question: Why do some companies thrive in uncertainty, even chaos, and others do not?
Some myths and contrary findings:
Myth: Successful leaders in a turbulent world are bold, risk-seeking visionaries.
Contrary Finding: The best leaders studied did not have a visionary ability to ...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, including the classic BUILT TO LAST, ...more