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Advice from Outside the Square

Monthly Archives: May 2009

Creating A Resilient Organisation

Organisational culture and behaviour rests on the prevailing climate that exists in the firm. This climate can encourage resilience to appear in an organisation, or it can in fact encourage a set of circumstances where the organisation breaks at the first sign of crisis. A summary of the prevailing attitudes that encourage resilience (or lack of) is in the following table:- Studies have shown common characteristics of “resilient” organisations, or organisations that have stood the test of time in the way they are managed, successful corporations and those that have “kicked in” the extra mile to out-strip competitors. In particular, Tom Peters’ work in “In Search of Excellence” (1979) and his later book “Thriving on Chaos” (1987) and Jim Collins’ work in “Good to Great” (2001) have identified characteristics of such successful companies. In “Thriving on Chaos”, Peters summarised his earlier work into 5 characteristics of a successful corporation:-
  1. Total customer responsiveness
  2. Fast paced innovation
  3. Flexibility by empowering people
  4. Leadership at all levels
  5. Systems that can handle chaos
In 2001 Jim Collins published his research in a book called “Good to Great” and in it he identified 6 characteristics of companies that “kicked in” an extra effort and outstripped competitors:-
  1. “Level 5” Leadership
  2. First who, then what
  3. Confront the brutal facts
  4. Hedgehog concept
  5. Culture...
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