Book

Competing by Design

David A. Nadler and Michael L. Tushman

Published in print October 1997 | ISBN: 9780195099171
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199854868 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195099171.001.0001
Competing by Design

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If the defining goal of modern-day business can be isolated to just one item, it would be the search for competitive advantage. Competition is more intense than ever—technological innovation, consumer expectations, and government deregulation all combine to create more opportunities for new competitors to change the basic rules of the game. At the same time, most of the old reliable sources of competitive advantage are drying up: the strategies employed by GM, IBM, and AT&T to maintain their positions of dominance in the 1960s and 70s are now obsolete. The authors of this book argue that the last remaining source of truly sustainable competitive advantage lies in “organizational capabilities”: the unique ways each organization structures its work and motivates its people to achieve clearly articulated strategic objectives. The book argues that managers must understand the concepts and learn the skills involved in designing their organization to exploit their inherent strengths. All the reengineering, restructuring, and downsizing in the world will merely destabilize a company if the change doesn't address the fundamental patterns of performance—and if the change doesn't recognize the unique core competencies of that company. The authors draw upon specific cases to illustrate the design process in practice, and they provide a set of tools for using strategic organization design to gain competitive advantage. They present a design process, explore key decisions managers face, and list the guiding principles for incorporating the design function as a continuing and integral process.

Keywords: competitive advantage; technological innovation; consumer expectation; government deregulation; GM; IBM; AT&T; organizational capabilities; strategic objectives; performance patterns

Book.  252 pages.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Organizational Theory and Behaviour

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Table of Contents

A Blueprint for Change in Competing by Design

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The Principles of Design in Competing by Design

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The Crucial Design Issues in Competing by Design

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A Process for Design in Competing by Design

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Implementing New Designs in Competing by Design

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