The McKinsey Quarterly

Articles from No. 3, Summer

An Open Letter to CEOs: How Otherwise Good Managers Spend Too Much on Information Technology
"I'm mad as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore!" The choice is yours: manage information technology, or give away a bundle The experts' "three" I's: infallible, inflexible, and very inflatable You have the knowledge to change this...
Capital Productivity: Why the US Leads and Why It Matters
"High telecom performance levels in the US are attributable to the fact that firms are owned by private investors, not the government, and that regulators focus on maintaining low prices." How well a country uses its capital ought to be extremely...
China's Consumer Market: A Huge Opportunity to Fail?
For many companies, destructive cycles reverse early successes Strong sales, distribution, and organizational capabilities are key Your goal: $1 billion in sales by the year 2000 China's market for mass consumer goods has exploded over the...
Developing Customers before Products
A new strategy for high-tech industrial markets - self-destruction Getting out early is as important as getting in early Wrong taking samples to old customers Right: drawing roadmaps with the right ones Sustained profitability in today's...
Drucker: The Guru's Guru
Decentralization, privatization, empowerment, knowledge worker, MBO, flat organizations - he comed them all. Required reading at the Ecole Nationale d'Administration. Drucker also inspires the Reverend Bill Hybels. A "management utopian." Perhaps,...
Flatness Forays
When, if ever, should you reorganize around processes? How much functional structure should be left in place? Two companies who got it right: Ford and Kraft The theory of the "horizontal organization" an organization focused on meeting customer...
How Vertical Integration Can Sap Profits
Recent studies in the chemicals industry have shown that poor profitability can sometimes be attributed to the way in which vertically integrated companies price their products. The main concern of an upstream business, where the cost of capacity...
Managing Risk in Healthcare
Why margins are becoming ??? Do you understand your exposure As in banking, risks can be unbundled The business of healthcare is becoming riskier. Capitation is increasing the risk providers must assume; expansion of the populations they cover...
Marketing to the Digital Consumer
Let's admit it: most Web sites are duds The task is to attract and engage, not to price and promote Relating to "chiliheads" Should your online marketing be a separate unit? The rapid development of interactive media such as online services...
Nobody Calls Me General Anymore!
An interview with Gus Pagonis, Executive Vice President for Logistics, Sears Gus Pagonis: I am a strong believer in centralized control, decentralized execution. In the Gulf War, General Schwarzkopf made the US Army's 22nd Support Command responsible...
Putting People Values to Work
Most executives are nervous about discussing organizational values. Many are downright cynical, and believe that shared values are something that managers talk about to make their staff feel good but that have no bearing on performance. Recent research...
Quality Is Not a Black and White Issue
Many companies have embraced Continuous Improvement as a means of ensuring that a product or process is performing satisfactorily. Yet many also fail to reap its benefits because the quality measurements they still employ are too crude for today's...
The Future Role of Postal Operators
The cozy monopolies that postal operators have so long enjoyed are gradually being prised apart by deregulation, while new forms of communication are starting to erode traditional markets. To prepare a strategy for survival, postal operators need...
The New Electric Industry: What's at Stake?
Three new and different businesses will emerge Many traditional industry players will have to close or sell large portions of their current business No one has yet discovered the electric equivalent of call waiting, but they will Market forces...
Virtual Vertical Integration: The Key to Success
Reasons for success in the machinery industry are changing with astounding speed. Five years ago, factors such as cross functional development teams, single sourcing and group work differentiated the best performing companies from the weaker ones.(*)...
Who Will Benefit from Virtual Information?
How online marketing could shift the balance of power loan scenarios A key issue information liquidity Future competitors will include these who might capture information you want The history of consumer marketing during the past two decades...
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