Accelerate! (John P. Kotter) - Surf the waves of opportunity (Dieter Legat) - Unblock the power of your sales force! (William W. Woehr and Dieter Legat)
This is the famous catalyzing article, in which John P. Kotter describes the need for agile business management as a separate but complementary management practice, required to not just cope, but win when acceleration hits a business.
Are you managing a business or a business unit or is your goal to achieve such positions? Then this book is for you. It summarizes what I have learned about operational leadership over more than 50 years as a business manager and top management consultant1:
Top management’s job is to spot the waves of opportunity and lead the company in riding them. Visionary and strategic thinking is required to spot waves. Operational leadership leads the company in riding them. It’s like surfing big waves. To spot one is important, but success lies in riding it without falling off the surfboard.
Your business is a living creature, a self-organizing and self-creating system. It comprises every element that supports us in or hinders us from achieving our goals. It is much more than the company. All of the elements in the entire business ecosystem are part of the whole system.
For success in operational leadership, you must do five things right
To lead this living organism, do five things right, in a never-ending cycle of agile leadership:
One: Set the right operational goals to establish the line on which you want to surf your wave. You only need one: contribution margin.
Two: Plan. Build your surfboard. Design the right plan: Focus it on resolving constraints. Write it down on one single page.
Three: Execute. Surf your wave. Follow the goal to deliver the obligations outlined in your operational plan.
"Today we are not only convinced, that in a certain moment there is only one constraint hindering success in sales, but that the main constraint are we ourselves, the sales mangers. Sales management must change, must be redefined from scratch.
Then, sales management must lead sales through this change.
Lead your sales organization into a world where cost cutting is not your prime job, where you are not victim of the economic situation any longer. A world where you can lead again, instead of being led."