The Breakthrough Company

The Breakthrough Company : How Everyday Companies Become Extraordinary Performers

3.8 (261 ratings by Goodreads)
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The vast majority of small businesses stay small--and not by choice. Only the most savvy and persistent--a tiny one tenth of one percent--break through to annual sales above $250 million. In "The Breakthrough Company," Keith McFarland pinpoints how everyday companies become extraordinary, showing that luck is a negligible factor. Rather, breakthrough success turns out to be associated with a clearly identifiable set of strategies and skills that anyone in any business can emulate--from small startup to industry leader. Encouraged by experts such as business legend Peter Drucker and Good to Great author Jim Collins to identify the drivers that enable a company to push past the entrepreneurial phase, McFarland spent five years building and analyzing the world's largest growth-company performance database and interviewing more than 1,500 growth-company executives on four continents. His goal was simple: to identify the secrets of breakthrough. "The Breakthrough Company" is the result. Winnowing a study pool of more than 7,000 companies down to nine that have made the transition to major-player status, McFarland highlights real-world tools and myth-busting insights that can be used by anyone wanting his or her business to join this exclusive circle. Among the book's takeaways: - Common wisdom holds that the founders and core entrepreneurial leaders of a company must step aside for the business to reach the next level. Not true--as long as founders "crown the company" instead of themselves. - It's not reckless to make ever-escalating bets on your company's future, even going nose to nose with competitors many times your size. In fact, it turns out that the only safety comes in constantly upping the ante in exactly this way. - A Business Bermuda Triangle does exist, gobbling up companies on the verge of breakthrough. Presented here are three ways to navigate this potentially deadly hazard successfully. - However good you are--or think you are--you can't do it alone. Learn how to surround your company with networks of outside resources, aka "scaffolding," and how to enlist the aid of "insultants"--people who are willing to question a firm's existing assumptions and ways of doing business. With powerful and specific action steps concluding each chapter--and invaluable advice on virtually every page from business leaders who've taken their companies to extraordinary levels of growth and profitability--"The Breakthrough Company" is one of the most provocative, inspiring, and instructive business books you'll ever read. "From the Hardcover edition."show more

Product details

  • CD-Audio
  • 140 x 162 x 26mm | 181.44g
  • Random House USA Inc
  • Random House Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Abridged
  • abridged edition
  • 0739358537
  • 9780739358535
  • 1,493,131

About Keith R McFarland

At the age of twenty-six, Keith R. McFarland was named associate dean of one of the nation's leading business schools. He went on to serve as CEO of two top technology firms prior to establishing McFarland Strategy Partners, where he has ad-vised hundreds of growth companies as well as industry leaders such as Microsoft, Motorola, -and Morgan Stanley. Currently, McFarland is a columnist for "BusinessWeek." He and and his family live just downhill from the ski lifts at Snowbird, Utah. Vistit his website at more

Review quote

"Keith McFarland is about to be added to the list of the top business thinkers--Tom Peters, Jim Collins, Ken Blanchard and Stephen Covey. If you buy only one business book in 2008, this one should be it." --Harvey Mackay, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller "Swim with the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive" "Greatly needed! Features marvelous analysis of the principles that enable entrepreneurial enterprises to survive and thrive. It will inspire those in charge to become true leaders by rejecting 'small' goals rooted in ego and embracing visionary values that impart moral authority up and down the organizational ladder. I urge you to read this book: it's impressively researched, beautifully illustrated, and clearly written." --Stephen R. Covey, author of "7 Habits of Highly Effective People" "McFarland successfully tackles the ever-present question for ambitious entrepreneurs: just how do you go from small to big-and prosper? This book has the makings of a classic." --Steve Forbes, President & CEO, Editor-in-Chief, Forbes "THE BREAKTHROUGH COMPANY is a book that refreshingly and persuasively backs up -- with a wealth of hard evidence -- its contrarian claims regarding how to elevate a growing business to undreamt of levels...Think GOOD TO GREAT for those still small enough to think big." --Bob Eckert, Chairman & CEO, Mattel, Inc "Disdainful of too-easily-accepted 'common wisdom, ' zealous at getting to the real facts of what makes some companies stall out and others thrive, Keith McFarland's THE BREAKTHROUGH COMPANY offers a goldmine of insight to anyone who's ever dreamed that the business they lead can become a 'player.'" --The Honorable Jack Kemp, Former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, Former Vice-Presidential Candidate, Former US Congressman. "A seriously great book...Drawing from an unusually detailed and careful study of both excellent and average performers, McFarland offers a set of powerfshow more

Rating details

261 ratings
3.8 out of 5 stars
5 22% (58)
4 43% (111)
3 29% (76)
2 5% (14)
1 1% (2)
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