Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don't

Author: Jim Collins
This Year Hacker News 2
This Month Hacker News 1


by PaulHoule   2022-10-30
Consider weekly "all hands" meetings and the concept of "psychological safety"

in particular he talks about the value of having an organization where everybody from top to bottom understands the business case for the business and the futility of painting on "alignment" when the fundamentals are not in place. If you address the fundamentals that Collins talks about some of the barriers to feedback working will melt away.

by PaulHoule   2021-06-09
Your opinion on the product does matter.

Even if you get a lot of pleasure out of puzzle solving and other technical aspects of your work, you will experience moral injury if you are working on a product that you think is harmful.

I defer to subject matter experts where I work, I am very much a specialist in the details of the system, but I know the product I work on makes some people happy and it gets mentioned on the news (in a positive way) almost every day.

That adds to the satisfaction of my work.

This book

says that a good corporate culture has a mission that is obvious to everyone who works there and that everybody can understand how what they do relates to that mission.

It might not be "I am pumped to work on this product" but it is "having a story that makes sense", which is absent in many workplaces.

by unoti   2020-09-29
A great resource to get you thinking along the right lines: the book Spin Selling[1]. This book is about doing selling involving long sales cycles, where it could take you a good amount of time to close the deal. This is often the case with enterprise software.

An example of a great concept from this book that has shaped the way I approach things: You've heard of the concept of closing, where you ask the customer to buy the product. Spin selling extends that concept in the realm of a longer sales cycle that involves many steps such as demos, consulting sessions and so on. Every interaction you have with the customer has some desired outcome that eventually leads to the final sale. For example, your initial contacts with the prospect, the goal of those initial interactions is to get the demo scheduled. Or perhaps it's to introduce you to someone closer to the decision maker. In each interaction, you keep a goal in mind and close towards that goal.

Three other books that were amazing and formative for me are below. These aren't about sales in particular but about making your own business in general, which includes sales in various degrees: 2. Good to Great 3. Crossing the Chasm 4. The E Myth

Also an honorable mention goes to this book, which is more about marketing than sales: Winning Through Intimidation. The book isn't actually about intimidating people, but it's about branding, image, and approach. Despite the evil sounding title, it's an amazing resource.

[1] [2] [3] [4] [5]

by austincheney   2020-07-28
I learned so much about structure and organization from

I learned the value of utility from Nicomachean Ethics in that it establishes a value hierarchy starting from the fragment: that which exists for its own sake.

I liked this book for establishing ethics as the basis for rapid growth in business:

A lot of people struggle with CSS. It’s not hard but it take some solid practice to master. This is the best book:

Honesty is important. Brutal honesty forces changes to culture and everybody wins. It forces you to act with ethics for the welfare of the group:

Fear of innovation is a form of hecklers veto, more so when popularity or a majority is threatened. Originality, even when wrong, is always more important: On Liberty.

by austincheney   2019-12-08
My favorites are Good to Great and Principles



by anonymous   2018-01-14

I'm using Amazon AWSECommerceService to help the user find and add Amazon item to resources in applications DB. I have an input field with some JS code - when a user types some text it will grab it and search for items using AWSECommerceService. On my local machine, I'm getting correct date whit good DetailPageURL for items. But when the app is deployed to customers test server Amazon service returns weird URL.


This is the URL is returned to my localhost:

And this is a URL returned for the same item on customers server:

This NULL value is returned instead of parameters. I am still unable to find the solution to this issue - the same code works differently in two environments.

by wheelerwj   2017-08-19
This is an interesting question, because it signals that you are most likely very new to hiring, and maybe ill-equipped to handle managing people in general. Although, at least you're asking questions.

First, very rarely does a manager regret a hire even though it's very common for a hire not to work out. Hiring and interviewing are in terrible shape right now, and more often then not lead to terrible hiring/job acceptance choices.

Second, you regret hiring PEOPLE, not developers because regrettable hires aren't specific to developers. When they are, it's because an engineer was given too much access to something they should not have been and a theft/breach occurs.

Examples of these concepts in play: The NSA probably regrets hiring Edward Snowden. I don't regret hiring the last JS dev I hired even though it didn't work out and he moved to a different company.

Lack of technical expertise is a problem sometimes, but it can be nurtured. Lack of personal skills is a huge problem in an office environment, and is much, much harder to nurture. But neither of these are regrettable in-and-of themselves.

The thing to remember is that you have to weigh the urgency of hiring against the long term impacts of hiring the wrong person. In other words, be careful and set up controls, but don't allow decision paralysis.

Good luck with your project, keep your head up, and expect failure. Great employees are rare, so just keep at it.

post mobile edit:

Go read:

Good To Great:

How to Win Friends and Influence People:

Emotional Intelligence: