Thriving in Uncertainty

– a quick personal note: I’m away attending to some urgent family business, so I’ve had to suspend the 2013 GsD Fall Term for a week. In it’s place, I’m reposting one of the most popular series on 27gen – a look at Jim Collins’ book Great by Choice with application to ChurchWorld. It continues to get views almost every day, so I hope you enjoy the entire series!

Ten years after the worldwide bestseller Good to Great, Jim Collins returns with another groundbreaking work, this time to ask:

Why do some companies thrive in uncertainty, even chaos, and others do not?

Great by Choice distinguishes itself from Collins’s prior work by its focus not just on performance, but also on the type of unstable environments faced by leaders today.

With a team of more than twenty researchers, Collins and his colleague Morten Hansen studied companies that rose to greatness – beating their industry indexes by a minimum of ten times over fifteen years – in environment characterized by big forces and rapid shifts that leaders could not predict or control. The research then contrasted these “10X companies” to a carefully selected set of comparison companies that failed to achieve greatness in similarly extreme environments.

These 10X companies and leaders navigated the chaotic times exceptionally well. They don’t merely react; they create. They don’t merely survive; they prevail. They don’t merely succeed; they thrive. They build great enterprises that can endure.

Thriving in a chaotic world is not just a business challenge. Collins is arguably on of the most widely read and quoted authors in ChurchWorld. His previous works, especially Good to Great, continue to influence leaders in churches both large and small across the country.

Principles like the Hedgehog Concept, First Who, core values, BHAG, the flywheel, Level 5 Leadership and the Five Stages of Decline have all contributed to the success and growth of leaders and their organizations. Great by Choice tests these principles and found that they do apply in a chaotic and uncertain world. But the primary purpose of the book is to share new concepts learned.

Over the next few days I will be diving into sections of Great by Choice and making some applications to ChurchWorld.

Tomorrow – just what is a 10Xer, anyway?

Great by Choice


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