There were a few books in the 90’s that had significant influence on shaping my personal thinking about how to accelerate performance in business. Three notable ones were The Ultimate Resource (Version One made the case for how entrepreneurship was the ultimate resource but that’s out of print now), Execution and Competing for the Future, by CK Pralahad and Gary Hamel.
About the professor, from Wikipedia:
Prahalad has been among top ten management thinkers in every major survey for over ten years. Business Week said of him: "a brilliant teacher at the University of Michigan, he may well be the most influential thinker on business strategy today." He was a member of the Blue Ribbon Commission of the United Nations on Private Sector and Development. He was the first recipient of the Lal Bahadur Shastri Award for contributions to Management and Public Administration presented by the President of India in 2000.
In this latest book, “The New Age of Innovation:
Professor Prahalad and M.S. Krishnan suggest an internal capacity to reconfigure resources in real time by focusing on clearly documented, transparent, and resilient business processes (the link between strategy, business models and operations) has become a strong differentiator.
As many of you know, I focus militantly on how the internal design of the enterprise need to be re-casted to meet the social customer’s demands and how to compete effectively. Technology differentiation as a competitive weapon played a central role in the last round of management thinking and strategy. Going forward its going to be about how effectively you can create and leverage people networks to solve business problems and get ahead by complimenting those discrete processes that have been unnecessarily fenced in by those very structured systems. Technology obviously has a critical role to play. But its a lot more than that.
Professor C.K. Prahalad was one of the few that not only pushed the boundaries on where organizations need to be interms of their thinking and wiring but he was one of the few that brought practical solutions that were cognizant of realities on the ground. More important he never lost sight of the “how” as he presented new thinking around the “what” and the “why”.
Here’s the professor on Innovation:
My deepest condolences to the Prahalad family and his loved ones during this difficult time. May he rest in peace.