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Every 10X case beat its industry index by at least 10 times. The book is structured around the main finding of the research. This boils down to three core behaviors:.

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They have egos, but their egos are channeled into their companies and their purposes, not personal aggrandizement. An especially fascinating chapter reports their findings on what role luck played in the 10Xers success and the failure of their comparison companies. On the one hand, they credit good luck in retrospect for having played a role in their achievements, despite the undeniable fact that others were just as lucky.

Equally, they grasp that if they fail to perceive when good luck helped, they might overestimate their own skill and leave themselves exposed when good luck runs dry. There might be more good luck down the road, but 10Xers never count on it. Great by Choice is very aptly titled. Collins and Hansen present incredibly strong evidence through their exhaustive research which included reviewing 7, historical documents!


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Ten years after the worldwide best seller Good to Great, Jim Collins returns with another ground-breaking work, this time to ask: Why do some companies thrive in uncertainty, even chaos, and others do not? Based on nine years of research, buttressed by rigorous analysis and infused with engaging stories, Collins and his colleague, Morten Hansen, enumerate the principles for building a truly great enterprise in unpredictable, tumultuous, and fast-moving times. The New Study. Great by Choice distinguishes itself from Collins's prior work by its focus not just on performance, but also on the type of unstable environments faced by leaders today.

With a team of more than 20 researchers, Collins and Hansen studied companies that rose to greatness - beating their industry indexes by a minimum of 10 times over 15 years - in environments characterized by big forces and rapid shifts that leaders could not predict or control.

The research team then contrasted these "10X companies" to a carefully selected set of comparison companies that failed to achieve greatness in similarly extreme environments. The New Findings. Our leaders did that repeatedly. They would be hit with something unexpected, they had the ability to zoom out and then they would zoom in.

When hit with something unexpected, their first question is not, what do we do? Their first question is, how much time do we have to make a decision before the risk profile of this situation changes? You could immediately go in for an operation tomorrow because you just want to get rid of it.

Great by Choice : Uncertainty, Chaos and Luck--Why Some Thrive Despite Them All

Do I have hours, days, weeks, months or years? But that ability to zoom out and assess that before you react is a useful skill in an uncertain world. It is a way to keep yourself alive. Hansen: We started seeing this in every company: They had some specific operating rules. We first saw this in Southwest Airlines, when they were facing deregulation of the airline industry in Think about those rules.

They are very specific. Embodying all these rules is an economic logic as to why this is working so well. When we looked at this list of 10 points, we saw these operating, guiding rules in every company, and we labeled this the SMaC recipe. What does this give you? It gives you very clear guidance on how to operate going forward.

We think that tactics are only relevant for, say, this year or this quarter. But here we see the opposite: We see specific yet durable principles that guide the company and its operations. Most — all except one — did during times when they were successful. To me, that is truly a mind-stretching idea. PSA is the classic example.

Actionable Insights - Great by Choice

Now what we hear is the really big idea that came from this. You tend to think of a choice between incremental change or radical change. But that is an artificial choice. Is it about being a wave or a particle? Which is it? But any single amendment, like, say, the 13th Amendment or giving votes to women — would you call that incremental change?

No, it is huge change and yet most of the recipe remains intact.


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So when Intel made the huge change to go from memory chips to microprocessors, is that incremental change? No, that is a massive change for Intel. Which is it here? Are they making fundamental change?

by Collins, Jim, Hansen, Morten T.

Or are they keeping things intact? By having that, you get this beautiful power of consistency, which you must have to be great, and fundamental change, when needed, which you must have to remain great. When you put the two together, you get this absolutely marvelous idea. Hansen: What we show in the comparison companies, those that had only average performance, is not that they changed because they were in trouble.

They start changing when they were in a good position. Like PSA, they had a very good model going into deregulation. They had the same model as Southwest, as Jim said. We should morph and become something else.