Summary of Good to Great by Jim Collins: Why Some Companies Make the Leap...and Others Don't

  • by FlashBooks Book Summaries
  • Narrated by Dean Bokhari
  • 0 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

This is a book summary of Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap...And Others Don't by Jim Collins
Original book description:
The Challenge

Built to Last, the defining management study of the '90s, showed how great companies triumph over time and how long-term sustained performance can be engineered into the DNA of an enterprise from the verybeginning.
But what about the company that is not born with great DNA? How can good companies, mediocre companies, even bad companies achieve enduring greatness?
The Study
For years, this question preyed on the mind of Jim Collins. Are there companies that defy gravity and convert long-term mediocrity or worse into long-term superiority? And if so, what are the universal distinguishing characteristics that cause a company to go from good to great?
The Standards
Using tough benchmarks, Collins and his research team identified a set of elite companies that made the leap to great results and sustained those results for at least 15 years. How great? After the leap, the good-to-great companies generated cumulative stock returns that beat the general stock market by an average of seven times in 15 years, better than twice the results delivered by a composite index of the world's greatest companies, including Coca-Cola, Intel, General Electric, and Merck.
The Comparisons
The research team contrasted the good-to-great companies with a carefully selected set of comparison companies that failed to make the leap from good to great. What was different? Why did one set of companies become truly great performers while the other set remained only good?
The Findings
The findings of the Good to Great study will surprise many listeners and shed light on virtually every area of management strategy and practice. The findings include:


Level 5 Leaders: The research team was shocked to discover the type of leadership required to achieve greatness.
The Hedgehog Concept (Simplicity within the Three Circles): To go from good to great requires transcending the curse of competence.
A Culture of Discipline: When you combine a culture of discipline with an ethic of entrepreneurship, you get the magical alchemy of great results. Technology Accelerators: Good-to-great companies think differently about the role of technology.
The Flywheel and the Doom Loop: Those who launch radical change programs and wrenching restructurings will almost certainly fail to make the leap.

"Some of the key concepts discerned in the study," comments Jim Collins, "fly in the face of our modern business culture and will, quite frankly, upset some people."
Perhaps, but who can afford to ignore these findings?

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Great quick summary

Thought the summary and narration was great. Quick and straight to the point. Get the full book for all the details, but if you're busy like me, the meat and potatoes are summarized really well in this audio.
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- DB

Excellent summation of Good to Great

Would you consider the audio edition of Summary of Good to Great by Jim Collins: Why Some Companies Make the Leap...and Others Don't to be better than the print version?

This is an excellent summary of "Good to Great" by Jim Collins. Bought the full audiobook version after listening to this summary.


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- Anna Z.

Book Details

  • Release Date: 07-12-2017
  • Publisher: FlashBooks Book Summaries