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GGI RapidNews R&D Product Development eZine: Volume 3, Issue 9 - November 6, 2002
GGI RapidNews is published approximately once a month.

In This Issue

BOOK REVIEW - Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done

NEW BIENNIAL SURVEY - 2002 RD&E Survey Results available soon

TELEVISION EVENT - Alexander Haig's World Business Review

NEW WEB CONTENT - Updated Calendar of Events and New GTKs

FEATURED I-STORE ITEM - 1998 Product Development Metrics Research Summary

UPCOMING CONFERENCES & SEMINARS - IQPC's R&D Measurement Conference, and Worldwide Business Research's Innovate 2002 Conference



Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done, by Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan. Crown Business, June, 2002, 1st edition; 256 pages.

Execution: it's not just about making the numbers; it's about getting things done and delivering results. Honeywell International, Inc. CEO Larry Bossidy and consultant/author Ram Charan discuss execution as a key discipline, 3 building blocks for execution, which form the foundation for the three core processes of people, strategy and operations. Success in execution means succeeding in the marketplace against your competitors, using the set of behaviors and techniques summarized here.

A CEO's excellent strategy cannot guarantee success unless it is executed well. Understanding execution as a discipline is key to making it happen. Execution is "a systematic process of rigorously discussing the hows and whats, questioning, tenaciously following through, and ensuring accountability. It includes several key activities, including:

1. Making assumptions about the business environment,

2. Assessing the organization's capabilities,

3. Linking strategy to operations and the people who are going to implement the strategy,

4. Synchronizing those people and their various disciplines,

5. Linking rewards to outcomes."

Business leaders must be completely focused on execution as their major job. They must drive, not delegate, the core processes - people, strategy and operations - in order to get things done. Leaders must also embrace execution and make it a core element of their company's culture. Execution must be practiced constantly, embedded in the reward system, and a part of everyday behavior at all levels of the organization. The core processes mentioned above rest on 3 building blocks, leadership, a framework for cultural change, and the right people in the right jobs. To read more details on this book, please scroll down to the end of this issue of GGI RapidNews.


2002 RD&E Survey - Resource & Capacity Management: The composite results of this year's Product Development Metrics Survey were first presented to the public by Brad Goldense at Management Roundtable's Metrics Conference on October 29 in Chicago. Survey participants will soon receive in the mail a 100+-page Executive Summary detailing the results, including graphics and analysis of the data. By early December GGI will be publishing the 3 versions of the survey results reports that we offer for sale to the public: the text-only Highlights report, the Summary report of composite results, and the detailed Results report (with "special cuts" which are segment results). These reports will be available in the Market Research section of GGI's iStore ( ), and we will notify you when these become available.


Alexander Haig's World Business Review: Brad Goldense has made several appearances on Alexander Haig's World Business Review, and more are on the way. Some are now available on streaming video. See below for details.

August 4th On Location at GGI (3.5 minutes): This On-Location field report is now available in streaming video on GGI's website. To see the program, go to

The web page also includes links to download a streaming video player, if you do not currently have one installed on your computer.

September 29th In Studio with Alexander Haig (22.5 minutes): This In-Studio program aired nationwide and internationally on the PBS Business and Technology Network (a subscription service) and on Tech TV from September 29 through October 13. We expect streaming video for this segment to be available within the next month.

CNBC paid programming (7.5 minutes): This In-Studio interview will air at a later date, to be determined.

United Airlines In-Flight Console (22.5 minutes): This In-Studio interview, which originally aired on September 29, will be shown on United Airlines international flights, with airing scheduled to begin in December. For a list of flights, go to

For more information on any of Brad's appearances on television, go to


GTK-Gateways To Knowledge: Your resource for industry and product development related information and contacts offers thousands of links to providers of technologies and services for line management functions. The main entrance to GTK can be found at:

One of our top 3 MEGA Gateways is the Calendar of Industry Events MEGA Gateway, a listing of links to conferences, seminars and distance learning opportunities. The Calendar has just been updated with dozens of new listings through the end of this year. In these times of tight budgets and limited training dollars, come to the Calendar MEGA Gateway to make an informed decision on which learning events to attend. The Calendar also lists prior events from this year, which may help you plan next year's training budget. The Calendar of Industry Events MEGA Gateway is located at:

Another top MEGA Gateway is the Technology Providers MEGA Gateway, which is a directory of hundreds of links organized by technical topic (hardware and software). The Technology Providers MEGA Gateway can be found at:

Data Mining: Find it in the Technology Providers MEGA Gateway. This NEW Gateway offers links to companies that provide Data Mining solutions software. The URL is located at:

Data Warehouse Modeling: Find it in the Technology Providers MEGA Gateway. This NEW Gateway offers links to companies that provide Data Warehouse Modeling software. The URL is located at:

Databases & Stores: Find it in the Technology Providers MEGA Gateway. This NEW Gateway offers links to companies that provide Databases & Stores software. The URL is located at:

Storage Solutions: Find it in the Technology Providers MEGA Gateway. This NEW Gateway offers links to companies that provide computer storage hardware. The URL is located at:

Server Solutions: Find it in the Technology Providers MEGA Gateway. This NEW Gateway offers links to companies that provide computer server hardware. The URL is located at:


Featured Item: GGI's iStore features one deeply discounted offering which usually runs for more than one month. The Featured Item is the "1998 Product Development Metrics Research Summary."

This 88-page report presents the detailed results of GGI's 1998 Product Development Metrics Survey, which focused on metrics systems in use in industry as well as rewards and recognition for product development performance. The report is organized in 5 sections, each of which contains factual observations, management analysis and a full set of graphics. This report, which analyzes the survey population of 190 respondents as a whole, will provide you with detailed information on

1. Types, frequency of, and specific metrics in use,

2. The state of corporate metrics,

3. The state of project metrics, including standardization,

4. Linkages from team performance in new product development activities to rewards and recognition, and

5. How companies are implementing metrics systems.

The price for the report has been dropped from $1760.00 to $1056.00, a deep discount of 40%. For more information or to purchase this valuable report, go to


IQPC "R&D Measurement:"

IQPC presents their R&D Measurement Conference in Chicago on November 18-20, 2002. The theme of this year's conference is Lessons learnt from best practice companies using performance measurements to effectively manage for Quality in R&D. You'll learn from leading-edge companies who have faced the challenges of making R&D more productive. As a result, they have designed & developed thoughtful and thorough performance measurement systems to handle a range of vital issues, including cycle times, increasing customer satisfaction levels, process improvements, and product innovations. The conference features keynote speaker Al Endres, author of Improving R&D Performance - The Juran Way, in addition to case studies, strategic workshops and an interactive panel discussion.

Brad Goldense will make two presentations at this conference. The first workshop, on November 18, is "How Metrics Can Accelerate Product Development," which focuses on getting started on measuring the product development process in order to accelerate your company's performance. The second workshop is "Implementing Proactive and Predictive R&D Metrics," on November 20. This workshop will focus on metrics that are used at the planning and definition stages of R&D, the crucial beginning stages of the product development process, prior to the existence of a physical prototype.

For more information, go to:

Worldwide Business Research "Innovate 2002:" Worldwide Business Research will hold its conference, "Innovate 2002" on December 4-5, 2002 in San Antonio, Texas. Innovate 2002 focuses on the theme of Optimizing collaborative product design, engineering and manufacturing to increase speed to market, improve time to volume and cut costs. The conference features keynote speaker Mike Morton, Director Global Product Development, General Motors, as well as case studies and workshops.

As part of the Special Post-Conference Performance Metrics & Benchmarking Summit on Friday, December 6, Brad Goldense will lead a workshop on "Metrics For Managing RD&E Resources & Capacity: A Survey Of North American Manufacturers and High-Tech Companies." He will present the results of results of GGI's 2002 Product Development Metrics Survey.

For more information, go to:

BOOK REVIEW, continued from above

Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done, by Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan. Crown Business, June, 2002, 1st edition; 256 pages.

The core processes mentioned above rest on 3 building blocks, leadership, a framework for cultural change, and the right people in the right jobs, all described below.

Building Block #1: The Leader's Seven Essential Behaviors

1. Know your people and your business. Be present, connect with your people, get direct information.

2. Insist on realism. Start with yourself.

3. Set clear goals and priorities. Focus on a few clear goals and keep communication simple.

4. Follow through. Address resistance, create a follow-through mechanism such as a monthly meeting, and expect follow-through from everyone.

5. Reward the doers. Base rewards on measured, demonstrated performance.

6. Expand people's capabilities through coaching. Pass on your knowledge and experience to the next generation of leaders.

7. Know yourself. Know your strengths and build on them; be aware of your weaknesses and correct them. Develop emotional fortitude in order to handle the many challenging situations you are likely to encounter.

Building Block #2: The Framework for Cultural Change

Leaders must "create the type of behavior that supports an execution-driven culture." The change process will realign people's beliefs and behaviors to link to bottom-line results. Keys to driving this behavior change are

1. Link rewards to performance.

2. Develop the social software (values, beliefs, norms) of execution. Any forum for exchange of information (meetings, presentations, etc.) must demonstrate the culture of execution.

3. Recognize the importance of robust dialogue. Foster creativity by keeping an open mind, listen to all sides, drive to closure with assigned tasks, and keep people accountable for outcomes.

4. Understand that leaders get the behavior they exhibit and tolerate.

Building Block #3: The Right People in the Right Jobs

A crucial job of the business leader is to select and evaluate people for the work. Leaders must "commit 40 percent of their time and emotional energy to selecting, appraising, and developing people." Finding people who can get the job done means a sustainable competitive advantage for your company. The interview process must be systematic in determining a candidate's energy, accomplishments and enthusiasm for execution. In choosing leaders for your company, look for these key characteristics:

1. Leaders know how to energize people.

2. Leaders are decisive on tough issues, and they act on their decisions.

3. Leaders get things done through others, neither micromanaging nor abandoning their people.

4. Leaders follow through.

The People Process

The building blocks mentioned above form the foundation for the core processes for a company to execute: people, strategy, and operations. Of the three, the people process is the most important, since the people actually do the execution. A robust people process has the goals of accurate and in-depth evaluation, identifying and developing leadership talent, and filling the leadership pipeline for succession planning. The people process consists of the following components:

1. Link people to strategy and operations. Leaders must put the right people in place to execute the strategy.

2. Develop the leadership pipeline. Constant assessment and identification of development needs will ultimately boost the organization's competitive advantage. Four helpful tools to develop the leadership pipeline are detailed, which will avoid the potential dangers of organizational inertia and premature promotion.

3. Deal with nonperformers. Let people go if needed, but do so constructively and while preserving the person's dignity.

4. Link HR to business results. Integrate HR in the business process, strategy and operations.

The Strategy Process

The second core process of execution is the strategy process. The goal of the strategy process is "to win the customer's preference and create a sustainable competitive advantage, while leaving sufficient money on the table for shareholders. A good strategic planning process also requires the utmost attention to the hows of executing the strategy." To develop the strategic plan, start by identifying the critical issues in the business, then link the strategic plan to the operating plan thereby aligning the whole organization. The strategy should be simple and summarized by six or fewer key concepts and actions. A solid strategic plan must address the following nine key questions:

1. What is the assessment of the external environment?

2. How well do you understand the existing customers and markets?

3. What is the best way to grow the business profitably, and what are the obstacles to growth?

4. Who is the competition?

5. Can the business execute the strategy?

6. What are the important milestones for executing the plan?

7. Are the short term and long term balanced?

8. What are the critical issues facing the business?

9. How will the business make money on a sustainable basis?

The Operations Process

The third and final core process of execution is the operations process. The operations process breaks down the long-term strategy into short-term targets, thereby providing a path for the people to achieve the business goals. The operations process thus aligns the whole organization, linking with strategy and people. The operating plan focuses on a one-year window to execute the programs to meet agreed-upon objectives. Before building an operating plan, the leadership team must debate the assumptions about the business environment and make trade-offs. Building the operating plan is a three-step process.

1. Set key targets that will drive improvement in results.

2. Develop action plans, including trade-offs between short-term objectives and long-term goals.

3. Get agreement and closure from all the participants. Establish follow-through measures.

Mastery of the three core processes - people, strategy and operations - individually and as an integrated whole, drives the success of any business. The supporting building blocks - the seven behaviors of leadership, a framework for cultural change and the right people in the right jobs - form the foundation upon which the core processes rest. "None of this work is extraordinarily hard. But it is extraordinarily important." Companies that succeed at implementing their strategy focus on execution.


GGI RapidNews is an e-mail publication from Goldense Group, Inc (GGI). Its subject matter includes survey findings, company news, book reviews, key industry conferences and R&D information of interest to clients and associates. Please send communications to rn(at) Thank you.