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Some of the Greatest Decisions in this Book:
What made Apple's board bring back Steve Jobs to the company?
Why did Samsung decide to send some of its top, young executives to spend a year goofing off in different parts of the world and how did this change the fate of the company?
What made Henry Ford decide to double the wages of his autoworkers, and how that changed the American economy for the next century?
The Greatest Business Decisions of All Time will spur stimulating debate and discussions in boardrooms and cafes about how these judgement calls apply to other businesses.
“Out of millions of decisions made every day, the 18 big decisions highlighted in this book provide great insight. The authors give enough context that the reader can understand the goals, the needs, and the possibilities for the decisions. The stories portray the studied nature of some decisions and the serendipitous nature of others. The book reminds those who want to lead that they have to choose a diff erent path from the well-trodden one of competitors.”
Professor Emeritus of Entrepreneurship, Harvard Business School
“CEOs make thousands of decisions every year, but only a few of them have dramatic impact on a company's brand, performance, and culture. IBM knows something about those types of 'big bets'. This book is a concise look at some of those big decisions and the C-suite moves that separated winners from the competition.”
—SAMUEL J. PALMISANO,
Chairman and former CEO, IBM
“When you look at the best business decisions that have been made throughout the years, a clear pattern emerges: The best decisions require not only great insight, but courage and commitment as well. The greatest business leaders are the ones who focus their energy not solely on profits, but on improving people's lives. These important lessons from our past, which this book brings to light, are more relevant than ever today.”
Executive Chairman, Ford Motor
“This is a treasure trove of compelling, insightful, and digestible stories that will provoke any leader to rethink how they make big decisions. A great read too.”
President, The Table Group; bestselling author of The Five Dysfunctions of a Team and The Advantage
“A great resouce! Learning about how others make great decisions can help you make great decisions! A fascinating, practical history that can change the way that you make decisions. Required reading for decison-makers —at all levels!”
Named the No. 1 Leadership Thinker in the World by Thinkers50, is a consultant and author of the New York Times bestsellers MOJO and What Got You Here Won’t Get You There.
Great Decision #10: Toyota pursues zero defects.
When Toyota made the decision to put quality first, the move wasn’t as obvious as it might seem today. The company was struggling. When it started shipping its first cars to the American market in the late 1950s, they were met with derision for their shoddy quality. In the midst of this crisis, president Taizo Ishida decided to do one of the hardest things for any company—especially a Japanese one—to do. Toyota adopted the ideas of an outsider—in this case the quality guru W. Edwards Deming—and turned its entire organization upside down in order to improve itself. Today the company’s quality system, known as the Toyota Way, has been adopted by manufacturers and, yes, even service firms around the world. The Toyota Way, for example, helped the company design cars faster than its competitors, proving that the process was just as important for “brain work” as it was “back work.” Executing this process, however, is a lot harder than it looks, and even Toyota in recent years has struggled with quality problems. By reapplying the Toyota Way with renewed vigor, the car maker is now getting back on track.
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Nominate This Week's Greatest Decision
What do you think is the smartest decision in business for the week of Oct. 1? Submit your answer here. We will award an iPad to the person who submits the most interesting decision in the next 18 weeks.