Surf the Waves of Opportunity: Lead your business to operational excellence with five things done right, Edition 2

BoD – Books on Demand

Are you managing a business or a business unit or is your goal to achieve such positions? Then this book is for you. It summarizes what I have learned about operational leadership over more than 50 years as a business manager and top management consultant: Operational leadership determines company success. Top management job is to spot the waves of opportunity and lead the company in riding them. Visionary and strategic thinking is required to spot waves. Operational leadership leads the company in riding them. It is like surfing big waves. To spot one is important, but success lies in riding it (operational execution) without falling off the surfboard. For success in operational leadership, you must do five things right, in a never-ending cycle of agile leadership: 1) Set the right operational goals to establish the line on which you want to surf your wave. You only need one single goal. 2) Plan. Build your surfboard. Design the right plan: Focus it on resolving constraints. Write it down on one single page. 3) Execute. Surf your wave. Follow the goal to deliver the obligations outlined in your operational plan. 4) Check. Review progress against your goals and execution of your operational plan. Go back to planning if the operational plans need to be adjusted. 5) Contribute the value required from operational leaders: Lead your Plan-Execute-Check cycle to spin faster than your competitors. Institutionalize the culture of operational excellence. Operational leadership is all about surfing monster waves of opportunity. It strains us to our limits. Yet it is the most fascinating and rewarding task in business management.
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About the author

I was born 1938 in Graz, Austria; am married, with two daughters and four grandchildren. I am an avid biker, skier and photographer and live in Geneva, Switzerland. After studying petroleum engineering at the University of Leoben, Austria I continued as Assistant at the Institute of Mathematics. In that role I worked with computers for the first time, which was the beginning of my career in computer business. In 1964 I started to work for AEG-Telefunken (then a GE OEM) and then joined Honeywell Computer Operations Europe. In 1974 I moved to Hewlett Packard. There, I enjoyed a career in sales management and quality management, where I had the honor and pleasure to guide the European computer business unit to win the HP Presidents Quality Award, awarded by the late Lew Platt, then HP President and CEO. My last assignment before retiring from HP was operational planning manager for HPs global accounts business. In that job I started to apply TOC (theory of constraints) to sales organizations - with special focus on selling to key accounts. During my time at HP, as part of my job, I consulted with many companies, sharing HP practices in operational leadership. After retiring from HP in 2001 I began a career as top management consultant, specializing in TOC based operational leadership. In this role I served top management of more than 30 companies from small start-ups to large multinational corporations in information technology, finance, machine engineering, and pharmaceuticals. For several years, I also taught operational leadership in a FIBAA certified postgraduate course for business managers, at the University of Graz, Austria. In 2002 with my partner and long time HP colleague at HP Bill Woehr we wrote the book Unblock the power of your sales force!, which introduces the theory of constraints for the domain of sales leadership. The book was also published in German and Japanese.

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Additional Information

BoD – Books on Demand
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Published on
Nov 10, 2016
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Business & Economics / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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