Knowledge Archive

McKinsey, February 9, 2009, Andrew Campbell, Stuart Sinclair
To meet the challenges of the economic crisis, corporate boards must change the way they work.
This short essay is a Conversation Starter, one in a series of invited opinions on topical issues. Read what the authors have to say, then let us know what you think. As companies grapple with uncertainty of a magnitude that few have experienced before, their boards should begin by questioning fundamental strategic assumptions: Is our view of the market realistic? Does our financing strategy... Read more »
Bain & Company, December 10, 2008, Darrell Rigby
Pull the Right Levers for Your Situation
The current economic downturn is likely to be steep, long and turbulent. What are the right moves now and over the coming months to adjust and play to your strengths? A critical first step is determining exactly where you stand. A tropical storm viewed from a weather satellite looks more or less uniform, as if it is affecting every area it touches with equal force. On the ground the picture... Read more »
McKinsey, December 1, 2008, Lowell Bryan, Diana Farrell
The range of possible futures confronting business is great. Companies that nurture flexibility, awareness, and resiliency are more likely to survive the crisis, and even to prosper. The future of capitalism is here, and it’s not what any of us expected. With breathtaking speed, in the autumn of 2008 the credit markets ceased functioning normally, governments around the world began... Read more »
McKinsey, December 1, 2008, Hugh Courtney
Although even the highest levels of uncertainty don’t prevent businesses from analyzing predicaments rationally, says author Hugh Courtney, the financial crisis has shown us the limits of our tools—and minds. Hugh Courtney’s book,20/20 Foresight: Crafting Strategy in an Uncertain World, was published the day before the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. As the economist and former... Read more »
McKinsey, December 1, 2008, Matthew Guthridge, John R. McPherson, William J. Wolf
A downturn can give smart companies a chance to upgrade their talent.
Downturns place companies’ talent strategies at risk. As deteriorating performance forces increasingly aggressive head count reductions, it’s easy to lose valuable contributors inadvertently, damage morale or the company’s external reputation among potential employees, or drop the ball on important training and staff-development programs. But there is a better way. By emphasizing talent in... Read more »

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