August 10, 2007

The Chief of Engineers is reading... Good to Great and the Social Sectors

Good to Great and the Social Sectors: Why Business Thinking is Not the Answer: a Monography to Accompany Good to Great
Jim Collins
HD 57.7 .C645m 2005

In an author's not at the beginning, Collins states that he had originally intended this material to be a new chapter in future editions of his book Good to Great the first edition of which was published in 2001. Following some rethinking, he decided to release this piece alone, stating that it stands on its own. He also comments that he feels that it is particularly important to address the growing role of the social sectors at this time because such a high percentage of his readership, more than a third, feels that his writing is as applicable to their work as it is to the business world.

After quickly reminding his readers of the definition of great, Collins proceeds to discuss issues such as leadership, hiring the right people, organizations with motivations other than profit, and building organizational momentum, culminating his discussion with how these factors contribute to becoming great. His conclusion, however, is that becoming great is not accidental or lucky. Rather, it is a deliberate choice and a matter of disciplined behaviors.