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Going the Distance: Why Some Companies Dominate and Others Fail

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Going the Distance: Why Some Companies Dominate and Others Fail

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  • Copyright 2003
  • Pages: 288
  • Edition: 1st
  • eBook (Adobe DRM)
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-148072-3
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-148072-8

Going the Distance identifies eight key obstacles to the long-term success of great businesses—and shows exactly how to overcome them. Former Cisco SVP Kevin Kennedy and leading consultant Mary Moore show how to assess corporate health and correct weaknesses in leadership, strategy, product, marketplace alignment, governance, and more—before it’s too late. Going the Distance provides a total framework for maintaining market leadership into the next generation!

Sample Content

Table of Contents





1. The Predictable Challenges Faced by Dominant Companies.

Eight Predictable Challenges. Execution Challenges. Governance Challenges.

2. How Complexity Develops.

Stage 1: Single Focus. Stage 2: Adding Products. Stage 3: Multiple Product Lines. Stage 4: Multiple Lines of Business. The Eight Inevitable Challenges and Stages of Growth. Momentum through the Four Stages.

3. Vital Signs for Monitoring Complexity.

Glare as a Vital Sign. Putting It All Together.

4. Innovation.

Market Disruption or Technology Inertia. A Closer Look at Market Disruption. Elements of Successful Disruption. Action Planning. Insertion Strategies. Partnerships and Acquisitions. Vital Signs for Technology Inertia. Call to Action.

5. Product Transitions.

Product Transitions-The Inevitable Challenge. A Successful Product Transition and the Lessons Learned: A Case Study. What to Do? Lessons Learned. Two Tools for Planning Product Transitions. Vital Signs.

6. Strategy.

Components of Cisco's Success. The Cisco A&D Strategy. Implementing the Cisco A&D Strategy. Successful Versus Misguided Strategies. Misdirected Strategic Vectors. Undersized Strategic Vectors. Self-Defeating Strategic Vectors. Shallowly Rooted Strategic Vectors. Inflexible or Fluid Strategic Vectors. How Does Misguided Strategy Occur? Vital Signs.

7. Alignment.

Five Tenets of Alignment. You Know It When It Is Thereúand When It Is Not. Alignment Is More Difficult with Growth. Alignment Starts with Clear Goals and a Clear Leadership Model. Alignment Maps the Value Chain. Structure Biases Results. Alignment in Later Stage Companies. Monitoring and Measuring Alignment. Considerations and Antidotes.

8. A Culture of Learning.

Culture as a Governing Tool. How Culture Governs. Learning Culture: A Competitive Advantage. The Elements of a Learning Culture. Establishing Cultural Underpinnings. Vital Signs.

9. Leadership DNA.

Rock Star Leaders. Leadership DNA Ingredients. Specialized Leadership DNA Ingredients. Changes in Leadership DNA Over Time. Leadership DNA and Other Governance Challenges. Meeting the Challenge. Vital Signs. A Call to Action.

10. Governance Systems.

A Second Scenario. A Third Scenario. Governance System Problems. Complexity Drives the Need for Formal Governance Systems. How Effective Governance Systems Work. Governance Systems and Culture. Vital Signs. Summary.

11. Board of Directors Oversight.

A Board's Evolution, from Startup through Stage 4. The Role of a Board of Directors. Weak Board Oversight. Why Is Board Oversight Often Weak? Antidotes. Vital Signs.

12. Putting It All Together.

Review of Our Thesis. Turning the Threads of Failure to Advantage. Meeting the Challenge in Difficult Times. Vital Signs Assessment. An Integrated Approach-A Tool for Diagnosis. Tenets for Managing Vital Signs. The Last Word.

Appendix. Background to Chapter 5: Product Transition Case Study.

Background: Cisco's Product Transition History. The Development of the User-Access Market. Meeting the Competition. Sales and Distribution. Background to the Choice for the Right Option.



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