Update: Steven J. Spear has been awarded the Philip Crosby Medal for his book “The High-Velocity Edge: How Market Leaders Leverage Operational Excellence to Beat the Competition” according to a Press release from ASQ—the world’s largest network of quality resources and experts (Milwaukee, WI March 2, 2011).
We have raved about the book “Chasing the Rabbit” written by Steven J. Spear and have just learned that the book has been re-released under a new a title, The High-Velocity Edge: How Market Leaders Leverage Operational Excellence to Beat the Competition. Recognizing that your time is a valuable commodity, we aim to provide information that is relevant to our readers and visitors. This book provides much more information on certain topics than one could ever hope to achieve through a website or blog – hence our recommendation.
This is perhaps an unprecedented marketing strategy for what was an already very successful book. In one respect this reflects the wisdom of Peter Drucker who suggested that there is a time to abandon the old (even if it is considered an award winning success) in lieu of the fresh and new. The following are excerpts from the e-mail we received from Steve that explain the reasons for this change:
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
The High Velocity Edge shows the particular skills and capabilities that lead to broad-based, high-speed, non-stop improvement and innovation. Master these and you achieve exceptional, rival-beating performance, even if facing intense competition. If you don’t, you watch as someone else wins
The book (and the website supporting it) are replete with examples of how these capabilities are developed and deployed in high tech and heavy industry, in design and production, in services like health care and in manufacturing.
There is Pratt and Whitney’s compression in time and cost of jet engine design, the Navy’s creation of nuclear propulsion with breath taking speed, Alcoa’s achieving near perfect workplace safety, and the exceptional improvement of care in medical institutions.
Toyota features prominently as an example, both in showing how successfully cultivating the capabilities introduced and illustrated in The High Velocity Edgeare the source of tremendous competitive strength and also in showing how the capacity to develop such capabilities can be overburdened.
With the release of The High Velocity Edge, I’m testing new media approaches, being released on its website, to bring the book’s ideas into broader practice more quickly than traditional means alone allow.
Here’s a closer look at what is new.
New Title and Cover: Why a new name and cover after three awards, versions in four languages, and flattering reviews? Well, people do judge a book by its cover, and those who didn’t read the reviews or learn of the awards were too often left wondering what was inside. Not so with the new.
New material: You’ll find a new preface and epilogue, drawing lessons about leadership, innovation, and operational excellence from Toyota’s recent struggles.
New media: I’m testing ways to help people master more quickly and reliably the skills that allow individuals and organizations to achieve broad-based, high-speed improvement and innovation.
On the way are an interactive web-based case study, an ‘open school’ course for those in health care professions, and a series of short tutorials to help people review what they’ve read and to help them teach what they’ve learned to their own students and colleagues. The results will be introduced on the book’s website.
Of course, there will still be postings, applying the principles of leadership, innovation, and operational excellence to current topics.
I certainly hope you find the new look, content, and format useful in pursuing perfection.
Please share your feedback, and let’s talk about how I can help you put these ideas to use in your own organization.
A high velocity organization is, in our opinion, a step above and beyond the traditional lean principles that are typical of most text books and seminars on this topic. The High-Velocity Edge: How Market Leaders Leverage Operational Excellence to Beat the Competition will prove to be a worthwhile read and we highly recommend this to any company seriously seeking to take their organization to the next level. We have also added this book to our recommended reading list.
Until Next Time – STAY lean!