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good to great chapter 5 summary

They’ll be self-motivating and manage themselves. The store was a success, but A&P’s management simply didn’t want to accept the results: The CEO, Ralph Burger, was more concerned with honoring the company’s founding principles than adjusting to a changing marketplace. Feel free to list several items, and for each item, describe how your stopping it fits with your Hedgehog Concept. It involves having the discipline to confront the brutal facts about your situation. Later, it returned to pharmaceuticals, focusing on “ethical drugs,” but the market was already well beyond them. When it fell further behind the industry leaders, it tried to diversity into areas it would be impossible to conquer. Once the Hedgehog Concept is found they are tasked with ensuring it is being ruthlessly driven forward. Use this exercise to reflect on Good to Great as a whole. Rather than panic, Walgreens took stock. It doesn’t get bogged down by all the complexity. At a glance, a Hedgehog Concept might just seem like sound strategy or sharp business sense. These are people who contribute using their skills, know-how and good work habits. The first three concepts slowly build its momentum. The upshot was that people extrapolated from the smaller accomplishments and got excited about where the company was headed. From the author of Built to Last, Good to Great outlines a model for turning a good, average or even mediocre company into a great one. The quality of all other people in the team is equally as important. Shortly after he became CEO in 1971, Smith and his team determined that coated paper, which constituted the core of Kimberley-Clark’s business, featured both little opportunity for growth and poor competition. To help develop their Hedgehog Concept many companies use a Business Council. We at Shortform won’t be entering into the debate about whether these examples undermine Collins’s findings. Bank of America’s executives, on the other hand, preserved the perks—corner offices, oriental rugs, dedicated elevators, a corporate jet—despite the exigencies of banking deregulation. These leaders are likely to make bad decisions because they don’t have a true understanding of the facts. Managers were allowed to be creative in how they realized their ROI, but, by the same token, they were tasked individually for realizing that ROI. Both Pitney Bowes and R. J. Reynolds, for example, were strongly affected by governmental reform. Disciplined people: means getting the right people and keeping them focused on excellence. In the book, there are many examples that will help bring the concepts we’ve discussed here to life. Only one—Pitney Bowes—reacted with hedgehog thinking (but not without some hiccups). Good-to-great leaders, however, don’t shy away from looking mistakes in face; in fact, they conduct detailed autopsies, without ascribing... (Shortform note: The following chapter inaugurates the “Breakthrough” phase of a good-to-great company’s timeline, when a good company takes its first definitive step toward becoming great. A company with the wrong people can never become great. Good-to-great leaders are hedgehogs—they develop a simple concept in response to the facts of reality and pursue that concept vigorously and with singular focus. For Abbott Laboratories, the mechanism was a clever deflection tactic built around its long-term objectives. discovered that good-to-great companies’ guiding concepts were driven by research and understanding along three axes. Abbott eventually became leading company in both these areas. Their breakthroughs are born of the yeoman’s work of developing a Hedgehog Concept, not diving headlong into the latest fad technology. In terms of technology, what separates good-to-great from simply good is the presence of the other good-to-great factors. How to achieve it: (1) Don’t hire until you’re sure you have the right person; (2) recognize when you need to make a change (whether by shifting a role or letting someone go) and act swiftly; and (3) assign your best people to your biggest opportunities rather than your biggest problems. A culture of discipline means having the organization full of people who will take action consistent with the hedgehog principle. Many of the executives that oversaw the bank’s navigation of banking deregulation went on to become CEOs of other major companies, including U.S. Bancorp, Household Finance, and Bank of America.

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