Book | 2009

Reorganize for Resilience: Putting Customers at the Center of Your Organization

by Ranjay Gulati

Abstract

In an era of raging commoditization and eroding profit margins, survival depends on resilience: staying one step ahead of your customers. Sure, most companies say they're "customer focused," but they don't deliver solutions to customers' thorniest problems. Why? Because they're stymied by the rigid "silos" they're organized around. In Reorganize for Resilience, Ranjay Gulati reveals how resilient companies prosper both in good times and bad, driving growth and increasing profitability by immersing themselves in the lives of their customers. This book shows how resilient organizations cut through internal barriers that impede action, build bridges between warring divisions, and transform former competitors into collaborators. Based on more than a decade of research in a variety of industries, and filled with examples from companies including Cisco Systems, La Farge, Starbucks, Best Buy, and Jones Lang LaSalle, Gulati explores the five levers of resilience: 1) Coordination: connect, eradicate, or restructure silos to enable swift responses. 2) Cooperation: foster a culture that aligns all employees around the shared goals of customer solutions. 3) Clout: redistribute power to "bridge builders" and customer champions. 4) Capability: develop employees' skills at tackling changing customer needs. 5) Connection: blend partners' offerings with yours to provide unique customer solutions.

Keywords: Competency and Skills; Customer Focus and Relationships; Profit; Organizational Culture; Organizational Structure; Cooperation;

Citation:

Gulati, Ranjay. Reorganize for Resilience: Putting Customers at the Center of Your Organization. Harvard Business Press, 2009.