18 June, 2006

Embrace The Change ....

This post has some impactful sentences from the book ONLY THE PARNOID SURVIVE - Andrew S. Grove

Who is Andy Grove?
Dr Andrew S. Grove, participated in the founding of
Intel Corporation and was a key driving force in its rapid success.He is a Senior Advisor to Executive Management of Inrel Corp. Ltd. Previously Grove was Chairman of the Board of Intel Corporation from May 1997 to May 2005. From 1987 to 1998 he served as the company’s CEO and from 1979 to 1997 he served as President. Prior to participating in the founding of Intel in 1968 with Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore, he worked as the Assistant Director of Research and Development for
Fairchild Semiconductor.

In "Only the Paranoid Survive", Grove reveals his strategy of focusing on a new way of measuring the nightmare moment every leader dreads - when massive change occurs and a company must, virtually overnight, adapt or fall by the wayside. Grove calls such a moment a Strategic Inflection Point. When a Strategic Inflection Point hits, the ordinary rules of business go out the window.

Impactful sentences

Strategic inflection point is a time in the life of a business when its fundamentals are about to change.

In the mid-eighties, the Japanese memory producers brought upon us an inflection point so overwhelming that it forced us out of memory chips and into a relatively new field of microprocessors.

You need to plan the way a fire department plans: It canot anticipate where the next fire will be, so it has to shape an energetic and efficient team that is capable of responding to the unanticipated.

Businesses are about creating change for other businesses. Competition is about creating change: technology is about creating change.

Middle manager- especially those who deal with the outside world, like people in sales – are often the first to realize that what worked before doesn’t quite work anymore; that the rules are changing. They usually don’t have an easy time explaining it to senior management, so the senior management in the company is late to realize that the world is changing on them- and the leader is often the last to know.

Even those who believed in the scientific approach to management will have to rely on the instinct and personal judgment. When you’re caught in the turbulence of strategic inflection point, the sad fact is that instinct and judgment are all you’ve got to guide you through.

First, when the strategic inflection point sweeps through the industry, the more successful a participant was in the old industry structure, the more threatened- it is by change and more reluctant it is to adapt to it.

As an industry becomes more competitive, companies are forced to retreat to their strongholds and specialize, in order to become world class in whatever segment the end up occupying.

Customers drifting away from their former buying habits may provide the subtle and insidious cause of a strategic inflection point – subtle and insidious because it takes place slowly.

I suspect that the people coming in are probably no better managers or leaders than the people they are replacing. They have only one advantage, but it may be crucial: unlike the person who has devoted his entire life to the company and therefore has a history of deep involvement in the sequence of events that led to present mess, the new managers come unencumbered by such emotional involvement and therefore are capable of applying an impersonal logic to the situation. They can see things much more objectively than their predecessors did.

Your genes were right for the original business. But if key aspects of the business shift around you, the very process of genetic selection that got you and your associates where you are might retard your ability to recognize the new trends.

The Cassandras in your organization are consistently helpful element in recognizing strategic inflection points. As you might remember, Cassandra was priestess who foretold the fall of Troy. Likewise, there are people who are quick to recognize impending change and cry out an early warning. Cassandras are usually in middle management.

Classify your time you spend in listening to them as an investment in learning what goes on at the distant periphery of your business, whether you think of distances in geographical or technological terms.

You can’t judge the significance of strategic inflection points by the quality of the first version.

The more complex the issues are, the more levels of management should be involved because people from different levels of management bring completely different points of view and expertise to the table, as well as different genetic makeups.

Contemporary management doctrine suggests that you should approach any debate and argument with data in hand. It’s good advice. Altogether too often, people substitute opinions for facts and emotions for analysis.

In the case of a strategic inflection point, the sequence goes more as follows:
Denial, escape, or diversion and, finally, acceptance and pertinent action.

Escape, or diversion, refers to the personal actions of the senior manager. When companies are facing major changes in their core business, they seem to plunge into what seem to be totally unrelated acquisitions and mergers. In my view, a lot of these activities are motivated by the need of senior management to occupy themselves respectably with something that dearly and legitimately requires their attention day in and day out, something that they can justify spending their time on and make progress in instead of figuring out how to cope with an impending strategically destructive force.

Its not surprising that senior mangers will keep implementing the same strategic and tactical moves that worked for them during the course of their careers – especially during their “championship season”.

You are trying to define what the company will be, yet that can only be done if you also undertake to define what the company will not be.

If you are in a leadership position, how you spend your time has enormous symbolic value. It will communicate what’s important or what isn’t far more powerfully than all speeches you can give.

At times like this, your calendar becomes your most important strategic tool. Resist the tacit temptation to accept invitations or make appointments because you have done so in past. Ask yourself the questions , “ Will going to this meeting teach me about the new technology or the new market that I think is very important now? Will it introduce me to people who can help me in new direction? Will it send a message about the importance of new direction? “ If so, go to it. If not resist it.

Intel operates by following the direction set by three high level corporate strategic objectives: first has to do with our microprocessor business; the second with the communication business; the third with our operations and the execution of our plans. We add a fourth objective, encapsulating all the things that are necessary to mobilize our efforts in connection with Internet.

Coffee ...something to start thinking..

Read this to enjoy the savor in life.

A group of alumni, highly established in their careers, got together to visit their old university professor. Conversation soon turned in to complaints about stress in work and life. Offering his guests coffee,the professor went to the kitchen and returned with a large pot ofcoffee and an assortment of cups - porcelain, plastic, glass, crystal,some plain looking, some expensive, some exquisite - telling them tohelp themselves to hot coffee.

When all the students had a cup of coffee in hand, the professor said:"If you noticed, all the nice looking expensive cups were taken up,leaving behind the plain and cheap ones. While it is but normal for youto want only the best for yourselves, that is the source of yourproblems and stress.What all of you really wanted was coffee, not the cup, but you consciously went for the best cups and were eyeing each other's cups.Now, if life is coffee, then the jobs, money and position in society arethe cups. They are just tools to hold and contain Life, but the qualityof Life doesn't change. Some times, by concentrating only on the cup, we fail to enjoy the coffee in it."

"So, don't let the cups drive you... enjoy the coffee instead."

14 June, 2006

My colour

There's nothing saccharine about me — My sweetness is one hundred percent natural! A gentle, thoughtful romantic like me must be paired with a color that's soft and warm — but still has a subtle sophisticated sheen. That's why Pink Chiffon is the perfect color for me!I am probably known for making the most of every situation and trying to see the best in people. But while I may be cheerful and innocent at times, I am nobody's fool. I may see the world through rose-colored glasses, but I can still see, after all.

13 June, 2006

Baby Steps.....

Hello everyone out there!!

I too have joined the band wagon of bloggers finally !!

Well I have no idea at present what to post ...!!

Check out my blogspot soon...
Something really interesting would be here !!