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Monday, 16 April 2012


I have been looking back through the many business books I bought in the late 1970s and early 1980s - you remember that era of the great gurus surge.  I paused at one called "The Business of Winning" by Robert Heller, published in 1980 and his acronym "IT BECAME FAST", a kind of menu of actions to speed up a sluggish company.  This is his acronym and, in the light of the challenges and struggles of businesses of all sizes right now, Robert Heller's thinking might just prompt some actions for improvement and, indeed, survival.

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THE BUSINESS OF WINNING by Robert Heller (1980)

• Improve basic efficiency – all the time
• Think as simply and directly as possible about what you’re doing and why
• Behave towards others as you wish them to behave towards you
• Evaluate each business and business opportunity with all the objective facts and logic you can muster
• Concentrate on what you do well
• Ask questions ceaselessly about your performance, your markets, your objectives
• Make money; if you don’t you can’t do anything else
• Economise, because doing the most with the least is the name of the game
• Flatten the company, so authority is spread over many people
• Admit to your failings and shortcomings, because only then will you be able to improve on them
• Share the benefits of success widely among those who helped to achieve it
• Tighten up the organisation wherever and whenever you can – because success tends to breed slackness

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