Book Notes: Good To Great by James C. Collins

Why Good to Great

Book Review and Notes on Good to Great by Jim C. CollinsI don’t know where I learned about this book. It seems like it’s just one of those books that everyone seeking to achieve something massive in their lives has to read. I want to do some amazing things.

During the course of my life I’m committed to seeing a turnaround in rainforest destruction and see the human race allow for regeneration of the rainforests and the biosphere as a whole.

So Good to Great seems like an important book of lessons for someone with audacious goals like this.

Aside from some of the stuff that clearly dates the book (like when he uses Fannie Mae as an example of a ‘great’ company.) All of the points in the book came as valuable resources to me.

It’s about getting people on board the ship and empowering them to make the ship unstoppable because everyone on board is working together to get that ship to Hawaii… or wherever.

So it’s another useful book that comes highly recommended. Here are my notes…

Reading Notes for Good to Great

2001 – a bit dated

Very scientific approach

Good to to Great companies – fanny Mae, Phillip Morris, Walgreens

You must be willing to go to the end of the world at your core business.

Data driven focus

Darwin Smith – CEO who took his company (Kimberly Clark) to record numbers

5 levels of Leadership

1. Highly capable individual – makes productive contribution through talent skills and productive work habits.

2. Contributing team member. Contributes individual capabilities to the effective gain of the whole team

3. Competent manager – organizes people and resources towards the effective mutual goal

4. Effective leader – catalyzes a movement towards a compelling vision stimulating high standards

5. Level 5 Executive – builds enduring greatness through a paradoxical blend of humility and professional will

Good to great company leaders had a focus on the company being great rather than themselves.

“You’re either on the bus or off the bus.” – Keysey

Get people onboard first to get a really unstoppable bus. Then the bus will be the powerhouse so if you have to change directions, you can.

With the wrong people on the bus, fuck where it’s going, it’s not going to make it there

Level 5 executives say:
“I don’t know where we should start with this company, but I do know that if I get the right people, ask them the right questions, and encourage vigorous debate, we will find a way to make this company great.”

Not a genius with a thousand helpers

Executive pay isn’t correlated with a great company.

People are the core of all successful companies. What makes a good company? People, people, people, people.

My overall take away from Good to Great

It’s all about the people baby. Yes. This is what I struggle with in my little podcast publishing company. I’m currently the book keeper to the designer. Gotta step away and start brining on superstars who can help us grow the thing to epic proportions.

I Hope These Notes on Good to Great You in a Useful Way

You can get a free copy of this book by singing up as a new member with Audible  through this link.

Good to Great is available on Amazon and you can have some people brining it to your doorstep simply by clicking over here.


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