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Study Shows Managers Aren't Ensuring Their Companies' Long-Term Survival

beat-the-odds.jpgDo you know the average life expectancy of corporations in general? A new study shows many business leaders don't; managers in young organizations shoot too low, and managers in older ones shoot too high. It's actually less than 50 years. And according to the research, the older an organization, the higher the odds management will become overconfident and complacent. Based on the corporate health assessment framework detailed in the book, "Beat the Odds: Avoid Corporate Death & Build a Resilient Enterprise," the study found that leaders aren't focusing their energies in the right directions to ensure their companies' long-term survival.
Respondents rated their companies on a scale of one to five -- one being the worst -- on the following nine principles:

  1. Purpose
  2. Core Values
  3. World/View Create the Future
  4. Inspiring Vision/Lead
  5. Strategies/Business Models/Competencies
  6. Aligned & Energized
  7. Measure
  8. Decide/Act/Get on with It
  9. Use Common Sense
Nearly half of respondents gave their organizations an overall rating below 3.5, and based on the financial information provided, those rankings directly correlate to the companies' overall health and their employee retention rates. Although respondents rated their companies highly on purpose and core values, the weak areas far outnumber the strong. Weaknesses include:
  • vision/leadership
  • align & energize
  • measure
  • decide/act
  • common sense
The study concludes that managers are getting too wrapped up in day-to-day operations and short-term thinking, and are failing to continually diagnose their organizations' attention to core principles. One of the study's sponsors (Greybeard Advisors) published "Beat the Odds..." so it's somewhat convenient that findings support the book's agenda. Nonetheless, the research clearly indicates managers know where their weaknesses are, but need to more proactively address them.

(Beat the Odds image courtesy of Moody75, cc 2.0)

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