Reaction Paper On Good to Great: Responding to Change by Jim Collins

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Good to Great: Responding to Change. I think that Jim Collins' book is essential for future entrepreneurs, managers, and leaders in the Philippines. The tips given by the author are useful in the dynamic, ever-changing, and constantly fluctuating business environment of the Philippines. Jim Collins described the kind of leader who can address these changes as a Level 5 leader – "a paradoxical blend of personal humility and professional will." The Level 5 leader is not the "corporate savior" or "turnaround expert". Most of the CEOs of the Good To Great companies as they made the transition were company insiders. They were more concerned about what they could "build, create and contribute" than what they could "get - fame, fortune, adulation, power, whatever". No Ken Lay of Enron or Carly Fiorina of HP, the larger-than-life CEO, led a Good To Great company. This kind of executive is "concerned more with their own reputation for personal greatness" than they are with "setting the company up for success in the next generation". Transformations from Good to Great start when a company finds a CEO who is humble but iron-willed, and who is ambitious for the company, not necessarily for himself or herself.

In this book, Jim Collins also challenges the notion that "people are your most important asset" and postulates, instead, that "the right people are." Despite the author's emphasis on finding the right people, there's no evidence that a company has to have concern for its employees as a core value for it to be great. There are a number of inherently great companies that didn't have this. I don't think Walt Disney cared about his people. He cared about films, and Disneyland, and smiles of kids. On the other side, with Hewlett-Packard and IBM, you had the antithesis of Walt Disney. When you look at corporate history, what matters is not what core values you have but that you have core value, and that you believe them. As another example, take David Maxwell's bus ride. When he became CEO of Fannie Mae in 1981, the company was losing $1 million every business day, with $56 billion worth of mortgage loans under water. The board desperately wanted to know what Maxwell was going to do to rescue the company. Maxwell responded to the "what" question the same way that all good-to-great leaders do: He told them, "That's the wrong first question.

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