Summary of Clock Speed: Winning Industry Control in the Age of Temporary Advantage by Charles H. Fine

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Summary of Clock Speed: Winning Industry Control in the Age of Temporary Advantage by Charles H. Fine Introduction In order to conduct a scientific study, you set a baseline then introduce changes in order to understand the impact of the change. Unfortunately, the rate of change, or clock speed, in many studies (human evolution as an example) is too slow for one person to have time to introduce multiple changes and measure the results. Biologists have found by studying fruit flies (a rapid clock speed with a life span of days rather than years), they can reach conclusions faster by studying multiple life spans in a short amount of time. As with the fruit fly, some businesses also have a rapid cycle making them a prime target for study in application to business in general. By studying organizations with fast clock speeds, one can draw inferences to others. Essentially, studying fruit fly industries lets us understand all industries with the idea of implementing effective change in any company regardless of their individual clock speed. Analysis Clock speed is defined as the rate an industry evolves based on product, process or organizational change. By looking across multiple industries, it is possible to find some with very rapid clock speeds and others with exceptionally slow ones. By taking lessons from industries such as entertainment and computers (very fast), one can draw conclusions for the automobile and aircraft industries (longest cycles noted). In his analysis, Charles Fine goes on to note that as the speed of an industry accelerates, the advantage one company may gain shortens – advantages are temporary. This conclusion is somewhat intuitive since the research and development to production cycle gets s... ... middle of paper ... ...ce provider. Granted, the turn of the double helix did happen and they appear to have changed as a reaction rather than through proactive process change. Conclusion Every business has an evolutionary clock speed measuring the rate of change in products, processes and capability. At the core of everything is the organizations ability to design a sustainable supply chain. When this becomes an organizations core competency, they are then positioned to continually win the temporary advantage. By simultaneously working to improve products, process design/creation and supply chains (three dimensional concurrent engineering), a company can drive the “turn of the helix” thus changing the clock speed for the industry. References Fine, C. H. (1998). Clock Speed: Winning Industry Control in the Age of Temporary Advantage. Reading, Massachusetts: Perseus Books.

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