A “Flywheel” Approach to Investing

By John Reese — Teacher and leadership coach Jim Collins has authored and co-authored six books that delve into the inner workings of corporations and what makes them succeed or fail. One of the many concepts he features in his books, articles and lectures is that of the flywheel: “No matter how dramatic the end result, good-to-great transformations never happen in one fell swoop. In building a great company or social sector enterprise, there is no single defining action, no grand program, no one killer innovation, no solitary lucky break, no miracle moment. Rather, the process resembles relentlessly pushing a […]

Tilson & Heins on How the Mighty Fall

At the heart of good stocks are good companies, and in their latest Kiplinger’s column Whitney Tilson and John Heins offer their perspective on what causes some companies to falter. Tilson and Heins do so in discussing the new book from Jim Collins, How the Mighty Fall. “Investors can gain a lot of insight from Collins’s new book,” they write. “He finds, for example, that failure is much more likely to result from corporate overreaching than from complacency.” Executives confuse “big” with “great”, according to Collins’s book, and overdiversify, move into businesses in which they can’t be leaders, and grow […]

‘Good to Great’ Author Collins: “Those Who Panic, Die On The Mountain”

Jim Collins, author of the top selling business books “Built to Last” and “Good to Great”, speaks with Fortune magazine about what it takes for companies to emerge from difficult periods in history. “A couple of things really jump out,” he says. “No. 1, in times of great duress, tumult, and uncertainty, you have to have moorings.” Highly successful firms have “incredible fabric of values, of underlying ideals or principles that explained why it was important that they existed.” The video below is previous interview Collins had done on the Charlie Rose show and is worth listening to if you […]