BookReview: Built to Last
by James C. Collins and Jerry I. Porras, HarperBusiness, 1997, 0-88730-739-6

My first Jim Collins book. I think of it as a Jim Collins book although Jerry Porras is probably as much a contributor as Collins was. It's just that all Collins' books have the same theme: trial and error works. While some people may read his "core values" talk as "stay the course". I disagree. I think it means: believe in yourself, and you'll be successful at whatever you do.

[p8] Visionary companies make some of their best moves by experimentation, trial and error, opportunism, and -- quite literally -- accident. What looks in retrospect like brilliant foresight and preplanning was often the result of "Let's try a lot of stuff and keep what works."

[p81] Thomas J. Watson, Jr embedded a huge caveat in his booklet A Business and Its Beliefs: If an organization is to meet the challenges of a changing world, it must be prepared to change everything about itself except [its basic} beliefs as it moves through corporate life.... The only sacred cow in an organization should be its basic philosophy of doing business.

Via Rob 2001