Business Strategy, Decisive Management, and Success
An Article Written for the Euro-Horizon Magazine
By Dr. John Psarouthakis
Founder and President, JPManagementCenter, llc
Adj. Professor of Business Administration (ret.), School of Business, University of Michigan, and Sr. Lecturer (ret.), Mechanical Engineering, MIT. Founder and former CEO, JPIndustries,Inc., a Fortune 500 industrial Group.
Plato, many centuries ago, said, “Nothing endures but change itself”. What is different in our era is not the presence of change but its pace–the rapidity with which ideas arise, are developed and applied, and the immediacy and degree of their impact in our lives. Let me illustrate.
When I were a student at MIT in the ‘50’s, it used to take five to ten years for an idea, or research result from a University, to become reality in the market and in our lives. Today it is almost simultaneous! This drastic change has fundamentally altered how we manage business and how the universities relate to the society at large and to the economic development demands more specifically. In the long past corporate strategists could rely on the likelihood that things would not change for a relatively long time. Long term periods were identified as ten year long, while a short tem was a three year time. Today these expectations are tossed out of the window. There is no “static” period to plan within. Things are ever changing. We live in a time phase when strategies must be dynamic, flexible and responsive to the ever changing conditions around us.
Dr. John Psarouthakis, Executive Editor of www.BusinessThinker.com, and Founder and former CEO, JP Industries, Inc., a Fortune 500 industrial corporation
Consider this unusual concept: you don’t have to grow to be self-employed and financially secure.
Peter started several businesses during his life, but once each venture was underway, he eventually reached a point where the business managed him rather than the other way around. While adept at identifying new markets and making sales, when it came to working with other employees, assigning tasks and coordinating their efforts, he never seemed quite able to make the transitions needed to assure business success. After several such failures, Ron hit upon a suitable niche for his talents–as a promoter of trade shows. He has no employees to contend with, each show is of relatively short duration, and he can move on to the next project before he gets bored or runs into complex management challenges.
Peter opted for zero growth–no employees, no hassles, and a good income.
John is CEO of a tool and die shop. At one time he was committed to growth of his firm but when the firm approached about twenty employees, John had to make a decision. If he continued to grow, he would have to add middle managers. As things stand, he is making an extremely good income and is able to house all his employees in one large unpartitioned quonset-style building. With this physical layout, and an organization of project teams, he can oversee his whole operation alone. His wife does the bookkeeping and he is able to handle all administrative and sales work in one small room in the front of the shop floor. He has made his decision: simplicity. This is not to diminish his staff’s technical accomplishments. Even the Japanese have toured this little plant, which produces some of the most innovative work in his industry.
Dr. John Psarouthakis, Executive Editor, www.BusinessThinker.com, Founder and former CEO, JP Industries, Inc., a Fortune 500 industrial Corporation. Received MIT’s Corporate Leader Award.
This is the first of short articles of my thoughts about Leading and Managing winning companies.
Why some companies constantly win in today’s globalized and intensely competitive world, while others struggle from one crisis to the next? It is simply leadership and management expertise that can take advantage of the rapidity with which ideas arise, are developed and applied, and the immediacy and degree of their impact in our lives. Let me illustrate.
When I were a student at MIT in the ‘50’s, it used to take five to ten years for an idea, or research result from a University, to become reality in the market and in our lives. Today it is almost simultaneous! This drastic change has fundamentally altered how we manage business.