You are previewing The Spider’s Strategy: Creating Networks to Avert Crisis, Create Change and Really Get Ahead.
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The Spider’s Strategy: Creating Networks to Avert Crisis, Create Change and Really Get Ahead

Book Description

To thrive in a world where networks of companies increasingly compete with other networks, managers can no longer focus solely on excellence in planning and execution. In The Spider’s Strategy, top business consultant Amit S. Mukherjee provides the tools you need to sense and respond to unexpected events. He shows why and how managers in your company must apply four powerful “Design Principles” today:

  • Change everyday work practices by embedding “sense and response” within your normal plan-and-execute processes.

  • Promote collaboration across partner companies by establishing practical mechanisms that make “win-win” a basis for action not an empty slogan.

  • Ensure that work really teaches by assuring the culture, processes, and organizational structure to improve your company’s ability to learn.

  • Implement those key technological capabilities that allow the network to function seamlessly.

  • The heart of this book includes proven implementation advice based on conversations with successful innovators at HP, Nokia, and beyond. Mukherjee offers new insight into everything from work practices to culture and corporate organization and shows how to overcome even the most stubborn obstacles to effective collaboration amongst partners.

    Table of Contents

    1. Copyright
      1. Dedication
    2. Praise for The Spider’s Strategy
    3. Acknowledgments
    4. About the Author
    5. I. Why Change?
      1. 1. The Fire That Changed an Industry
        1. Design Principles for Adaptive Businesses
        2. Organization of the Book
        3. Basis of the Ideas
        4. Endnotes
      2. 2. Shadows of the Past
        1. “Toto, I’ve a Feeling We’re Not in Kansas Anymore”
          1. The Decomposition of Work
          2. What Have You Done for Me Lately?
          3. The Blurring of Industries
        2. The Execution Trap
          1. How Ericsson Hit the Plan-and-Execute Wall (and Why the Midas Touch Did Not Help)
          2. Why We Should Hold off on the Self-Congratulatory Backslapping
        3. Endnotes
      3. 3. Visions from the Present
        1. The Power of Networks
        2. The New Capabilities of an Adaptive Business
          1. Where Ericsson and Nokia Stood
        3. The Imperfect Judgments of Not-Quite-Perfect Markets
          1. When Share Prices Fall...
          2. ...So Do Reputations
          3. The Leadership Challenge
        4. Endnotes
    6. II. Design Principles for Adaptive Capabilities
      1. 4. Transform Everyday Work
        1. The Importance of Being Earnestly Adaptive
        2. What Must the Company Sense?
        3. Four Operational Sense-and-Respond Systems
          1. Nokia’s Plan Reconfirmation Process
          2. Yield Management with Sabre
          3. Hewlett-Packard’s Buy-Sell Process
          4. Dell’s Online Store
        4. How to Design Sense-and-Respond Capabilities
          1. Creating a Sensing Capability
          2. Creating a Response Capability
        5. The Role of Senior Executives
          1. Ensure That Multiple Sense-and-Respond Capabilities Are Coherent
          2. Determining the Role of Technology
          3. Veering from Customer Intimacy to Being a Peeping Tom
          4. The Power to Reshape an Industry
        6. Endnotes
      2. 5. Succeed in a Dog-Eat-Dog World
        1. A Dog-Eat-Dog World
        2. Why Companies Act Against Their Own Best Interests
        3. The Importance of Playing Nice
        4. Playing Nice—to Win
          1. The PRM Program at Hewlett-Packard
          2. A Win-Win Policy at Nokia
        5. Implementing the Second Design Principle
          1. First, Recruit Passionate Believers
          2. Focus on Solving Specific Practical Problems
          3. Define Policies That Facilitate Information Sharing
          4. Change the Metrics
          5. Recognize That It Takes Time to Overcome Distrust
        6. Nice Guys Aren’t Finishing Last
        7. Endnotes
      3. 6. Ensure That Work Teaches
        1. How People Learn to Solve Business Problems
        2. Creating a Learning Organization
          1. Processes
          2. Organizational Structure
          3. Culture
        3. Implementing the Third Design Principle
          1. Create Self-Contained Learning Organizations
          2. Make Learning a Line Responsibility
          3. Change the Incentives
        4. Final Thoughts
        5. Endnotes
      4. 7. Make Technology Matter
        1. Provide Visibility
          1. Current and Emerging Visibility Technologies
          2. Making Strategic Decisions on Visibility
        2. Support Analysis
        3. Facilitate Collaboration
        4. Enable Mobility
        5. Implementing Adaptive Technologies
          1. Consider Capabilities Before Selecting Technologies
          2. Focus on People
          3. Avoid Band-Aids and Artistic Flourishes
          4. Include a Mix of People on the Team
          5. Remember Richard Feynman
        6. Final Thoughts
        7. Endnotes
    7. III. Going Adaptive
      1. 8. Create the Organization
        1. The Unfilled Role of Staff in an Adaptive Business
        2. The Chief Network Officer
          1. Staffing the CNO’s Office
        3. Characteristics of a Strong Chief Network Officer
          1. Final Thoughts on the Chief Network Officer
        4. Endnotes
      2. 9. Introduce Change Holographically
        1. Creating an Adaptive Business
          1. Introduce Adaptive Transformation Holographically
          2. Pick a Business Unit That Wants to Change
          3. Start at or Near the Top of the Organizational Hierarchy
          4. Build a Master Plan, Even One on a Small Scale
          5. Introduce the Design Principles in Waves
          6. Start with the Non-Customer-Facing Ends
          7. Remember That Incentives Can Be an Executive’s Best Friend
          8. For the Foreseeable Future, Let the Results Speak for Themselves
        2. Some Final Thoughts
        3. Endnote
      3. Epilogue: Two Views of a Company
        1. Endnote
    8. Financial Times Press