Agility: Competing and Winning in a Tech-Savvy Marketplace



Examining data for over 15,000 organizations, it is clear that technology's powerful impact on business performance ensures that companies who do not know how to take advantage of new tools will lose their competitive edge. Agility presents proven guidance on tackling the challenges of your business and how to fully leverage the potential of technology.

A must-read reframing...

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Examining data for over 15,000 organizations, it is clear that technology's powerful impact on business performance ensures that companies who do not know how to take advantage of new tools will lose their competitive edge. Agility presents proven guidance on tackling the challenges of your business and how to fully leverage the potential of technology.

A must-read reframing business strategy and technology implementation, Agility makes it clear: the digital divide is between those companies who view technology as a competitive asset and optimize it to its full potential—and those who . . . don't.

Praise for Agility

"Mr. Mueller-Eberstein from Microsoft is a true thought leader. His insights shared in Agility are spot on and were instrumental to advance my approach to IT management. Organizations adopting the Agility concepts will harvest tangible business results and increase their competitiveness ."
—Stephan Schmitt, Vice President, Hewlett-Packard

"The Internet has changed the way people live, work, and play. Now it's time for our concepts of team to change. This book provides a practical glimpse into the future. A future that is all about working in a globally networked world."
—John Henderson, Professor, Boston University

"In today's market, understanding the business implications of technology introduction is absolutely critical to an effective investment decision-making process. Mr. Mueller-Eberstein has done an outstanding job in explaining these technologies, how they can be used to transform business, and how customers have implemented them to achieve bottom-line business results. An excellent book on a very relevant topic."
—Bill Santos, General Manager, Services Development, SHI

"Unified communication is tomorrow's backbone for business success. Agility shows the correlation and how an organization can leapfrog their competition."
—Gurdeep Singh Pall, Corporate Vice President, Microsoft

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470635445
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 8/2/2010
  • Series: Microsoft Executive Leadership Series , #21
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 247
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

MARK MUELLER-EBERSTEIN is founder and CEO of Adgetec, whose mission is to help organizations and their leaders realize value globally. He is a recognized thought leader, speaker, mentor, and coach. He also advises start-ups, sometimes hands-on as their COO on business strategy and IP management. Agility was written based on his over fifteen years of global experience in the IT industry working with companies and governments to choose, adopt, roll out, and measure the impact of new technologies. In his responsibility as the director of deployment and adoption at Microsoft, he was responsible for the customers' value realization and deployment experience of Microsoft's Office and collaboration products; the customer and partner engagement during Microsoft's software development process; and joint research with leading academic institutions on technology adoption and its impact on business results. During his career with Microsoft and as the company's advisor, he coached Microsoft employees, customers, and partners across the globe on this and other topics. Prior to joining Microsoft, Mueller-Eberstein was at Hewlett-Packard in leadership positions in business development, marketing, and product management. He received a Master of Business Administration from the University of Technology Berlin and studied at the University of Marburg, both in his native country of Germany.

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Table of Contents



Chapter 1 Leading into the Future 1

Current Landscape 2

Key Forecast of IT Trends and Spends 4

Leading by Example 5

Chapter 2 Maximum Ride: Owning Technology versus Just Using IT 11

How the World Is Changing 13

Current Research in Enterprise Architecture 17

Making Quantum Leaps and Not Just Incremental Changes 22

Microsoft's Structured Approach 24

Infrastructure Maturity and the Impact on Core Business Performance 27

Trends 29

Note about Case Studies and the Infrastructure Optimization Model 31

Chapter 3 Optimizing for Agility: A Different Way to View Your Business 33

Individual, Organization, or Information Technology: Where Do You Start? 36

Role of Place, People, and Technology 44

Infrastructure Optimization 53

Capabilities: The Areas of Optimization 59

Chapter 4 Technology as the Competitive Edge 63

Why Benchmarking? 64

Auto, Finance, Healthcare, Public Sector View Comparison 69

Chapter 5 Business Impact: Technology Solutions from the Shop Floor to the Top Floor 109

IT as Business Enabler instead of Cost Center 110

Creating Business Intelligence from Data Overload 113

Improving Customer Contact through Web Site Design and Database Magic 118

Streamlining the Product Development Cycle 124

Retaining Confidentiality while Operating "in the Cloud" 128

Managing Suppliers and Inventory 132

Security, Security, and More Security 137

Working Anywhere, Anytime 140

Making Sustainability Part of the Bottom Line 143

Chapter 6 Assessing Your Situation 147

Where Is Your Starting Position? 150

Analyzing Where You Want to Go 156

Define Where You Want to Be 157

Where to Begin? 166

Chapter 7 Making It Happen 171

Big-Picture Goals during Change 173

Optimizing for Simplicity and Agility 181

Off-the-Shelf Solutions versus Customization 187

Building Your A Team 190

Ongoing Upgrades: Moving from "Old" to "Always Fresh" 195

Adoption Made Easier: Moving Data, Training People 196

Chapter 8 Optimizing Your Workforce: Leveraging the New with the Old 203

Technology Immigrants and Digital Natives 206

Getting Everyone across the Chasm 209

Social Networking: A Tool from Home Goes to Work 211

Sector Influence on Change 213

Old Dogs, New Kids, and the Naysayers 219

Chapter 9 Starting Over To Stay Ahead 225

Index 231

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    The jetblack shewolf sat down on one of her rocks. She had choosen this place because it ha lots of trees apond and a large river. The rocks in betwwen where large and flat-right in the sun. The trees were dense and there were lots of warm ferns. Prey was also availible. Swift sat on a rock thinking about her pack. It seemed like no one was on. She wished there was. It was always like this to her-no one really is on exept Streak and Blayze. Suddenly she rememberd what she had discoverd when exploring. She got up. And streatched.

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