For large companies comprised of multiple product groups or resulting from growth through mergers and acquisitions, the S” word, synergy, is touted as a great strategic advantage, but more often than not turns out to be a mirage, as managers haggle over turf and the parent company lacks the skills or commitment to recognize, support, and sustain collaboration. So how does a company become more than the sum of its parts? Here, international strategy gurus, Andrew Campbell and Michael Goold, offer an incisive and highly practical approach to overcoming barriers to synergy, evaluating opportunities within and outside the company, establishing appropriate roles for corporate headquarters and business units, and fostering a commitment to collaboration at all levels of the organization.
In today’s highly fluid business environment, for disparate business units to work together smoothly is increasingly becoming a critical component of long-term success. Andrew Campbell and Michael Goold understand this, and in The Collaborative Enterprise, the two examine “how synergy happens, why it doesn’t happen, and what managers can do about it.” Using real-world examples, they first look at the difficulties inherent in such partnerships and propose solutions from three different perspectives: the parent manager, the business-unit manager, and the researcher. “Collaborative management can be a major source of advantage,” they caution in conclusion. “But, for the vast majority of companies it is not just a nice ambition, it is a competitive necessity.” –Howard Rothman
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