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Boundaryless Organization : Breaking the Chains of Organization Structure

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In 1995 The Boundaryless Organization showed companies how to sweep away the artificial obstacles-such as hierarchy, turf, and geography-that get in the way of outstanding business performance. Now, in this completely revised edition of their groundbreaking work, management experts Ron Ashkenas, Dave Ulrich, Todd Jick, and Steve Kerr offer an up-to-date version of their comprehensive guide to help any organization go "boundaryless"-and become a company with the ability to quickly, proactively, and creatively ...

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In 1995 The Boundaryless Organization showed companies how to sweep away the artificial obstacles-such as hierarchy, turf, and geography-that get in the way of outstanding business performance. Now, in this completely revised edition of their groundbreaking work, management experts Ron Ashkenas, Dave Ulrich, Todd Jick, and Steve Kerr offer an up-to-date version of their comprehensive guide to help any organization go "boundaryless"-and become a company with the ability to quickly, proactively, and creatively adjust to changes in the environment. With new examples, a new commentary on the developments of the last five years, and illuminating first-hand accounts from pioneering senior executives, the authors once again show why "boundaryless" is a prerequisite for any organization trying to succeed in the economy of the twenty-first century.
Winner of the Executive Leadership Award

"If your organization is ready for transformation, The Boundaryless Organization will provide a simple but provocative framework either for getting started or for accelerating the pace."
— from the foreword by Lawrence A. Bossidy, chairman and CEO, Honeywell Corporation

"This is the best book on globalization and the seamless organization that I have read."
— David H. Komansky, chairman and CEO, Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc.

"A very important contribution."
— from the foreword by C. K. Prahalad, coauthor of Competing for the Future

"Attacks the very core of traditional management structure, with all of its walls, boundaries, and limitations."
Quality Progress

"Outlines how companies can make the change from rigid structures to ones where ideas, resources, and information can flow freely."
HR Strategies & Tactics

"A refreshing guide to innovative ways to do business . . . . Each part includes a questionnaire that readers can use to determine where they stand on a continuum between boundaried and boundaryless status."
Journal of Management Consulting

"Recommended reading."

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Editorial Reviews

Soundview Executive Book Summaries
In a completely revised edition of their 1995 groundbreaking work The Boundaryless Organization, the authors offer new examples, fresh commentary about the developments of the last five years, and first-hand accounts from visionary senior executives - proof that "boundaryless" is a necessity for any company that wants to succeed in today's economy. Copyright (c) 2002 Soundview Executive Book Summaries
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787959432
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 1/28/2002
  • Series: J-B US non-Franchise Leadership Series , #5
  • Edition description: REVISED
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 831,994
  • Product dimensions: 6.18 (w) x 9.28 (h) x 1.18 (d)

Meet the Author

Ron Ashkenas is a managing partner of Robert H. Schaffer & Associates in Stamford, Connecticut. A leading consultant to CEOs on organizational transformation, his articles have appeared in Harvard Business Review and other leading business publications. His clients have included General Electric, GlaxoSmithKline, the World Bank, and numerous other public and private sector firms.
Dave Ulrich is professor of business administration at the University of Michigan. He was named by Business Week as one of the world's top ten educators in management and the top educator in human resources.
Todd Jick, formerly a professor at Harvard Business School, is a managing partner with the Center for Executive Development in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He has consulted with numerous companies in the United States and Europe including Merrill Lynch, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Novartis, and Cadbury Schweppes.
Steve Kerr is chief learning officer and a managing director of Goldman Sachs. A former dean at the University of Southern California and former professor of management at the University of Michigan, he was the first chief learning officer for General Electric.

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Table of Contents

Foreword by: C. K. Prahalad.
Foreword by: Lawrence A. Bossidy.
The Authors.
* A New World Order: Rising to the Challenge of New Success Factors.
Stepping Up to the Line: How Boundaryless Is Your Organization?
Part One: Free Movement Up and Down: Crossing Vertical Boundaries.
First Person: Cesar Guajardo, General Director, Praxair Mexico.
* Toward a Healthy Hierarchy.
Stepping Up to the Line: How Healthy Is Your Organization's Hierarchy?
* Rewiring and Retuning the Hierarchy.
Part Two: Free Movement Side to Side: Crossing Horizontal Boundaries.
First Person: Daniel Vasella, Chairman and CEO, Novartis AG.
* Beyond Turf and Territory.
Stepping Up to the Line: How Congruent Are Your Organization's Horizontal Boundaries?
* Integrating Resources to Serve the Customer.
Part Three: Free Movement Along the Value Chain: Crossing External Boundaries.
First Person: Jim Madden, President, CEO, and Chairman of the Board, Exult.
* Toward Partnership with Customers and Suppliers.
Stepping Up to the Line: How Well Linked Is Your Organization's Value Chain?
* Strengthening the Value Chain.
Part Four: Free Global Movement: Crossing Geographic Boundaries.
First Person: Mieko Nishimizu, Vice President, World Bank South Asia Region.
* Toward the Global Corporation.
Stepping Up to the Line: How Far Along the Path to Globalization Is Your Organization?
* Actions for Global Learners, Launchers, and Leaders.
* Conclusion: Leading Toward the Boundaryless Organization.
Stepping Up to the Line: Are You a Boundaryless Leader?


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Customer Reviews

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 8, 2006

    For The Boundaryless thinking consultants

    Much have been said and written about organizations in the twenty-first century, but few explain how a organization function and what this organization in the twenty-first century really implies, if this organization want to survive in a long run. The authors have done an extraordinary job to lay out in plain language and examples from many organization, to show the real difficulties that boundaries cause in today¿s business and the practical solutions that managers and consultants are currently applying. The authors help readers evaluate their organizations¿ own structural boundaries and need and readiness for change. According to the authors organizations have always had and will continue to have boundaries. Managers and organizational theorists still focused on organizational structure as their primary vehicle for achieving effectiveness. According to the authors organizations that move quickly are flexible. A world of rapid change makes innovation essential. Doing today¿s work in today¿s way becomes outdated quickly, so boundaryless organizations constantly search for the new, the different, and the unthinkable. Boundaries also give people a place to hide. In an organization with permeable boundaries, ineffective performance is highly visible, not just to a few people but to many. People with big egos don¿t want to share information or even know how things work. According to the authors traditional organizations give lower-level employees skills training while senior employees receive strategic education, but boundaryless organizations offer all employees similar strategic education. This does not mean that traditional organizations do not have competent people. The authors believe that loosing vertical boundaries takes both wiring, to provide the framework for the long term, and tuning, to generate momentum for the short term, and organizations need to move people out in a constructive way, as a part of the firm¿s natural evolution. Boundaryless horizontal organizations require exquisite, flexible teamwork. Focusing on the business goal and the collaborative agenda, teams can learn on how to work across horizontal boundaries. People in a boundaryless value chain share information much more freely than people who work as solo in an organization. In the boundaryless world, successful organizations have new sale priorities. Instead of pushing product, salespeople advise customers and help them crystallize supply sales people create a pull for product. You can get much more movement by pulling on a chain than by pushing on it. The authors argued that it is one thing to plan organizational strategies and drive the organization toward greater speed, flexibility, integration, and innovation. It is another thing entirely to be responsible for career disruptions, layoffs, and family crises. But there is no doubt that the boundaryless world will be a new world for leadership as well for the troops. Who is this book for? Management consultants, MBA students, trainers of entrepreneurship, professionals working on building visions en missions and if you are interesting in strategic stretch. Al long as you keep learning along the way and building your learning back into your organization or business your will keep making progress toward the boundaryless organization and your of for the business in the twenty-first century.

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