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More Lessons From the CEO

  1. TO MAKE SURE THAT YOUR ORGANIZATION IS PREPARED FOR MASSIVE CHANGE, YOU MUST INSTILL A CULTURE THAT DESPISES COMPLACENCY. Hold regular managers' meetings to discuss possible forces that threaten your organization, and encourage rigorous debate. Make sure that this debate filters down into the organization.

  2. TO ACHIEVE STEP 1, INSTILL A HEALTHY AMOUNT OF FEAR INTO THE ORGANIZATION. Grove feels that this is key to making sure that complacency never infects your organization. Grove's embrace of paranoia may be off-putting to some, but it is difficult to argue with his results. Keeping everyone on their toes will help the company sniff out new threats before those threats become insurmountable.

  3. MAKE SURE THAT MANAGERS THROUGHOUT THE WORLD CAN COMMUNICATE WITH YOU DIRECTLY. (Email is probably the best way.) Remember that those managers who are closer to the customers are often aware of change before you are. It is imperative that you have a pipeline to those who are closer to the customer, so that you can get wind of any key shifts in your business context.

  4. MAKE EXPERIMENTATION WITH NEW PRODUCTS A REGULAR PART OF THE PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT PROCESS, EVEN IF THE REVENUES SEEM INSIGNIFICANT. Remember that a new product at the right time may be what saves your company when it faces a massive threat. Had Intel not been experimenting with microprocessors, its prospects as it got out of the memory market—or stayed in that losing game—would have been very dim.

  5. IF APPROPRIATE TO YOUR INDUSTRY, MAKE SURE THAT YOUR COMPANY'S BUSINESS STRATEGY INCLUDES A UNIQUE ONLINE COMPONENT. Grove regards the Internet as a strategic inflection point that everyone must face. Tomorrow's winners will be those companies that leverage the unique advantages of the Internet in a way their competitors have not yet thought of.

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