How Does Your
The World's Most Admired Leaders
Ask Questions And Adopt… "Business Execution"
ABB Ltd., Percey Barnevik,
Former Chairman (Current GM Director): "Thinking - the strategies
and designs - only gets you 5-10% of the way. 90% is in the
Accenture, Terry Neill, Former
Chairman of Global Board: "Winners out-execute rather than
outstrategize, their competitors."
Accenture, Walt Shill, Managing
Partner, Strategy Practice: "Today, successful CEOs operate
more like they are running white water rapids than sailing
a great ship across the ocean. They must intensely focus on
executing in the face of constant change. Successful teams
are still very strategic, but they have evolved to embrace
strategies that are pragmatic and highly focused on execution."
Accenture, George Shaheen,
Former CEO: "We better remember that in the end, it's all
about execution. You can be right on paper, but if you don't
execute it, it's not going to work."
Access Health Intl., William
A. Haseltine, Ph.D., Chairman and President: "There must
be a shared vision, strong leadership, fully capable management
and finally, superb execution."
Ace Hardware, Richard E.
Laskowski, Former Chairman: "The heart of success is discovering
the correct goal and then developing a plan of execution to
Aguila, Inc., Robert K. Green,
Chairman: "Focus and execution are mandatory. The only thing
you can really control, after all, is the performance of your
Alnylam, John Maraganore,
CEO: "We expect momentum to continue across the key value
drivers of our company: scientific leadership, pipeline advancement,
intellectual property and business execution."
Albertson's, Larry Johnston,
Former CEO: "When you get the best people, you don't have
to worry as much about the execution, because they make it
Amazon.com, Jeff Bezos, Chairman,
President and CEO, "The onus is on us to continue to execute
American General Financial Group,
Robert M. Devlin, Former Chairman and CEO, (Current Cooper
Industries Director): "Our ability to successfully execute
our strategy has produced results that met or exceeded our
long-term financial objectives."
AMR Corporation, Robert Crandall,
Former CEO: "About half of the job of management is trying
to figure out where the company is going to be 5 to 10 years
down the road, and the second half is execution."
Andreesen Horowitz, Marc
Andreessen, General Partner: A quote about Steve Jobs from
Andreessen Horowitz: "He set the performance standard
for product thinking and product execution that all the rest
of us should aspire to hit."
Apple, Steve Jobs, Former
CEO: "I have great confidence that Tim (Tim Cook) and
the rest of the executive management team will do a terrific
job executing the exciting plans we have in place."
Apple, Max Paley, Former
VP Engineering: "It looks like it has become a more conservative
execution engine rather than a pushing-the-envelope engineering
Applied Materials, Mike Splinter,
CEO: "Execution is often grinding and hard, so make employees
part of the process."
ATT, Ed Whitacre, Former
Chairman and CEO (Director Anheuser-Busch and BNSF Railway):
"We want to be the only company for your entertainment
and communications needs. We have the parts to do it -- we
just need to execute."
AXA, Andrew Penn, CEO: "It
is good execution more than strategy that separates leaders
from players in the market place. It is in the execution and
delivery where you succeed or fail. Ultimately, the role of
the CEO is to provide a clear vision and direction and ensure
it is well executed."
|| "I would definitely recommend
your program to leaders in any type of company. I have
heard many speakers over the last 38 years and I put you
in the top three."
| Brookshire Grocery
Bain & Company, Chris Zook,
Partner: "The company that comes up with a formula to find
and execute adjacency moves can bury its competitors."
Bakes & Company, Seth Bakes,
President: "There is nothing better than a good strategy well
executed. On the other hand, no matter how well you execute
a flawed strategy, it is still a flawed strategy. And, you
cannot improve a bad strategy with good execution, but you
can ruin a good strategy with poor execution."
Balderton Capital, Bernard
Liautaud, General Partner (Founder Business Objects): "We
are proud that we have been able to establish this strong
leadership through our consistent and focused execution in
Bausch & Lomb, Fred Hassan,
Chairman: "With a focus on execution, it's amazing how much
power can be unleashed."
Bausch & Lomb, Fred Hassan,
Chairman: "In the long-term it is all about being different
and better. And that means innovation and execution."
Brandon Hall Group, Brandon
Hall, President: "Well-executed new ideas make the world go
Brinker Intl., Douglas Brooks,
President and CEO: "Any craftsman or artist will tell you,
the success of a vision is contingent upon its execution."
BTM, Faisal Hoque, Founder,
Chairman and CEO: "Execution comes from creating and managing
an operating blueprint on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly
basis. The board, the CEO, the management team and employees
[at every level] have to be able to do that."
Caesar's Entertainment, Gary
Loveman, President: "Flawlessly executing today's strategy
is a paramount concern."
Canada Life Financial Corporation,
David A. Nield, Director and Former Chairman, President and
CEO: "Strategies do not implement themselves, people implement
Catalyst, Rick Wagoner, Director:
"A lot of success in this business is having a big plan and
implementing it better than the next guy."
CEOs in Tumultuous Times,
Ram Charan, Author Article: "The COO must be superb at execution,
and the CEO and COO must be able to communicate well and resolve
any differences without consuming an extraordinary amount
CFO Magazine, Ready, Set, Grow?,
Kate O’Sullivan, Writer: "Growth will likely spring from improved
execution and a very careful reading of customer needs."
Cheese Cake Factory, David
Overton, Chairman and CEO: "Bringing a Western restaurant
chain to the Middle East is an exercise in patience, creativity
and strong execution."
Chicago Sun-Times, Sidney
Harris, Columnist: "The idealist believes the short run doesn't
count. A cynic believes the long run doesn't matter. A realist
believes that what is done or left undone in the short run
determines the long run."
Chief Executive, John Brandt,
President & Editorial Editor: "Your first 100 days are critical
not to solve the problems (years in the making) but to impress
investors that you have a plan and that you can execute."
Cisco Systems, John Chambers,
President and CEO: "Besides the general market performance,
we can always stumble or be out-executed by our competition."
Citibank, Ed Horowitz, Corporate
Executive Vice President [Re: e-Citi]: "The overall execution
has gone slower than I had aspired to... People have to come
up to speed with the vision, embrace it, embed it in the business
plan and get it implemented in the individual business."
Citigroup, Vikram Pandit,
Chairman and CEO:"CEO drives execution decisions."
Coherent, John Ambroseo,
President, CEO and Director: "We can not predict where
or when the bottom of this cycle occurs, but we can and will
take the necessary steps to ensure that our business execution
and financial performance are commensurate with our position
as a market leader."
Coldwater Creek, Inc., Daniel
Griesemer, President and CEO: "Let me once again emphasize
that 2008 continues to be a year of transition. A year for
us to reenergize and sharpen the focus of the brand and our
S. Figura, VP, Colgate-US: "Execute with excellence and simply
be everywhere at once."
Comforce, John Fanning, Chairman
and CEO: "Integrity, competency and innovation don't mean
a thing without execution."
Constellation, Mayo Shattuck
III, Chairman: "The surge in profits reflects solid execution
throughout the company."
Cornell International, Alan
Guarino, CEO: "It takes the perseverance to stay the course,
and the ability to execute."
Crosspoint Venture Partners,
Steve Foster, Associate: "There's no shortage of capital or
necessary ideas, but it's incredibly difficult to find the
people to execute."
Dell, Inc., Kevin Rollins,
Former CEO: "We have a strategy which is a Dell Direct business
model, but then the key to its success is how well we implement
it day in and day out. Anytime we fail to execute it is the
biggest risk by far."
Dell Online, Richard Owen,
Vice President: "Customer service is still the basis of loyalty.
Outstanding execution is still as important as a good strategy."
The Denver Newspaper Agency,
Kirk MacDonald, Former CEO: "Adoption of a fitness-focused
lifestyle helped me become more innovative and get better
Disney, Robert Iger, Chairman
and CEO: "Toy Story should get made. Now, you still have to
have a great story and great execution -- and in the absence
of that, you shouldn't make it."
Disney Interactive Media Group,
Steve Wadsworth, President: "...the new unit will operate
under two global lines of business in order to provide greater
coordination on global content and global business execution:
Disney Interactive Studios (DIS) and Disney Online (DOL)."
Do It Best Corp., Bob Taylor,
President & CEO: "What would it look like if you did it?"
Do It Best Corp., Mike McClelland,
Former President and CEO: "You can xerox anything that stands
still. You can't copy anything moving."
DuPont, William Reilly about
Ellen Kullman, Chairman & CEO: "I think that she is exactly
the right person at this time. She has a reputation -- even
among people outside DuPont -- as someone who executes."
eBay, about Meg Whitman,
CEO, (by Tim Bajarin, Creative Marketing Strategies): "Vision
is one thing and there's a lot of that in Silicon Valley.
Execution is another. She's remarkable at actually getting
E*Trade, Christos Cotsakos,
Former CEO: "It's always been about building the right technology
and executing on that idea so that we could use that for a
variety of different areas and make it a disruptive technology."
Eclipsys, Harvey Wilson,
Chairman Emeritus: "We have the proven ability to execute
the strategy. If we don't continue to demonstrate that we
can execute it, it just becomes words on paper."
EDB, Teo Ming Kian, Chairman:
"If we know what Motorola or HP is going to do over the next
three to five years globally, we can shape our policies so
that we have everything they need in place to quickly implement
Electronic Data Systems,
Les Alberthal, Jr., Former President and CEO: "Our livelihood
depends on our ability to execute the soft stuff."
Enterprise Business Services,
Lori Beer, Executive Vice President: "We are focused now on
executing and delivering on our strategy as efficiently and
effectively as we can."
Equinix, Steve Smith, President
and CEO: "The strength of Equinix's continued demand and focus
on business execution will allow us to extend or market leadership
Ethan Allen, Edward Teplitz,
EVP: "It's up to leadership to initiate the beginnings of
change, and then it's up to us and those below us to implement
it. Once we decide the direction we need to come up with an
implementation plan and just push it through."
Execution: The Discipline of
Getting Things Done, Ram Charan, leading U.S. Management
Consultant and Author: "The emergence of world-class companies
from developing nations is a shift that portends a new global
game. Their leaders are good executors who see niches in the
global economy and can tap world intellectual capital and
financial markets to consolidate control across their industries."
Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg,
Chief Operating Officer: "It's about execution, doing things
faster and better, getting more users and more advertisers."
Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp.,
Donald H. Layton, CEO, : "We intend to be the provider of
choice. That takes leveraging our leadership positions and
remaining ahead of the curve in new ideas and the means to
|| "As our keynoter, you
successfully set the pace for the convention and created
an aura of anticipation for the audience."
| Ernst & Young
Fifth Third Bancorp, George
Schaefer, President: "The main difference between us and 225
different banks in Ohio, 125 to 150 thrifts and 570 credit
unions is the human-service element. We focus on daily execution."
Fortinet, Ken Xie, Founder,
President and CEO: "Increased market recognition, global large
customer adoption and solid business execution are driving
Fortinet's growth, which is outpacing the market."
Fortune, Peter Lewis, Writer:
"To stay atop, you need not only flawless execution but also
Fox Entertainment, Kevin
Reilly, Chairman: "We've gotten the public comfortable with
very high quality of execution."
Sullivan, Author: "Focus: knowing where and how the Fundamentals
have to be applied if anything is to be executed."
Garage.com, Guy Kawasaki,
Founder: "Either you ship a product and customers buy it,
or not. That's execution and execution is why you get the
big bucks and perks."
GE eXchange, Harvey Seegers,
President and CEO: "In every case, the distinguishing factor
between successful implementations and unsuccessful implementations
is the involvement of the CEO."
General Electric, Jack Welch,
Former Chairman and CEO: "Just worry about coming up with
great ideas, getting the best people, and delivering a terrific
execution. A leader is someone who can develop a vision of
what he or she wants their business unit to be...and then
can relentlessly drive implementation of that vision to a
successful conclusion. I believe the desire and the ability,
of an organization to continuously learn from any source,
anywhere, and to rapidly convert this learning into action,
is its ultimate competitive advantage. Information technology
is the key to both the learning, as well as the rapid execution
of the fruits of that learning."
General Electric, Jeff Immelt,
CEO: "Everyone has a decent strategy, but how many have leaders
at all levels of the organization who have the understanding,
drive and skills to execute it in ways others cannot?"
Genomic Health, Kimberly
Popovits, President and CEO: "My biggest focus is making sure
we've got the right team in place to execute because -- clearly
-- you can't do it alone."
George Mason University,
Robin Hanson, Associate Professor of Economics: "We don't
need more suggestion boxes or more street mimes to fill people
with a spirit of creativity. We instead need to better manage
the flood of ideas we already have and to reward managers
for executing them."
Giant Leap Consulting, Bill
Treasurer, Founder: "When leaders make plans in a vacuum,
they end up with no buy-in from the lower ranks. With no upfront
buy-in, your ability to execute at the unit level is DOA."
GM, Noel Tichy, Advisor:
"Execution for a dinosaur bureaucracy is rocket science."
GM, Rich Wagoner, CEO: "We're
executing the turnaround plan at a pace that's faster than
we thought we could."
GM, Bob Lutz, Former Vice
Chairman, Marketing and Communications: "...the actual execution
of messages to support the corporate strategies must be developed
and executed by the marketing advertising and communications
Golden Corral, Ted Fowler,
President and CEO: "You have to have a plan of where to go,
how to approach a hunt in a particular field or area and then
Good to Great, Jim
Collins, Author (on building enduring great companies and
their executives response to change): "They respond -always-
with a calm and penetrating search for understanding, followed
by deliberate, thoughtful action. It's really a stream of
decisions over time, brilliantly executed that accounts for
Google, Eric Schmidt, Former
Chairman and CEO: "If you run the company as a set of extended
conversations, you get a lot of buy-in, and buy-in drives
Greiche and Scaff, Gayle
Easterbrook, CEO: "It's the CEOs job to do the vision and
Hammer and Co., Dr. Michael
Hammer, President: "Execution is extremely hard, and you need
very careful metrics and instrumentation to know what you're
Harvard School of Business, Rosabeth Moss Kanter, Professor:
"Execution means having the mental and organizational flexibility
to put new business models into practice, even if they counter
what you're currently doing."
Hay Group, Mel Stark, Vice
President: "In today's environment, true leaders must do far
more than merely meet the numbers. To effectively implement
strategy, they must put people first and continually connect
with and motivate their human capital."
HCA, Thomas F. Frist, Jr.,
MD, Former Chairman and CEO, Current Director [Strategy Statement]:
"We would not now be articulating a vision based on local
focus and responsibility if we did not believe in the capability
and commitment of the people who run our hospitals. Therefore,
we ask you to join us by taking local ownership of this strategy
and its successful execution in your hospital and community."
Hewlett-Packard, Carly S.
Fiorina, Former CEO (Current Cybertrust Director): "You'd
have the most brilliant deal in the world, and if you don't
execute, it's worth nothing. Sharpen your vision, focus and
execution. Re-imagine what you can be."
Hewlett-Packard, Meg Whitman,
President & CEO (by Tim Bajarin, Creative Marketing Strategies):
"Vision is one thing and there's a lot of that in Silicon
Valley. Execution is another. She's remarkable at actually
getting things done."
Hewlett-Packard, Marius Haas, SVP: "My job is to lay
out the key initiatives we need to focus on in order to execute
Hewlett-Packard, Ray Lane, Chairman: "Let's execute
better while we figure out our long-term plan."
H. J. Heinz, William Johnson, Chairman, President and CEO:
"One of the differentiating strengths of this company
is our local autonomy and the way we execute strategy locally."
H. J. Heinz, William Johnson, Chairman, President and CEO:
"Ultimately, it's knowing when to invest in an idea,
when to cut your losses, and how to execute on the innovations
you pursue that yields the big payoff: organic growth and
Home Depot, Inc., Dennis
Donovan, Former Executive Vice President, HR: "The success
of the strategy rests in people's execution."
Honeywell Intl., Larry Bossidy,
Former CEO: "Success today is not simply about leading anymore.
It must be about implementing, not just announcing, strategies."
HSBC Holdings, Sir John R.
H. Bond, Former Chairman: "There are few original strategies
in banking. There's only execution."
Hummer Winblad Venture Partners,
Ann Winblad, Co-founding Partner: "The most important thing
we learned is that optimism cannot outweigh execution."
IBM, Louis V. Gerstner, Jr., Former Chairman and CEO (Current
Sloan-Kettering Director): "This technology stuff is hard.
And if I'm a company, what I really want is somebody who can
help me implement it."
|| "I have heard a number
of conference closing speeches over the last few years
and yours has been the best."
IBM, Samuel J. Palmisano,
CEO: "As the Internet and globalization widen the pool
of new ideas, it's about selecting and executing the
right ideas and bringing them to market in record time.
The company's own execution problems were mostly to
blame for first quarter earnings shortfall, adding that
IBM was 'taking aggressive action' to remedy them."
Ideo Inc., Tim Brown,
President and CEO: "Innovation is only valuable when
you implement it beautifully and elegantly."
Inc Magazine, George
Gendron, Editor-In-Chief: "It's easy for us to inadvertently
convey the impression that innovative approaches to
management can take care of everything. They can't.
They're certainly no substitute for good, solid business
Nandan Nilekani, Co-Chairman: "Leaders are people
who can easily traverse the levels between the big picture
and the nitty-gritty execution details."
John Faraci, Chairman and CEO: "...there's no one
lever you pull that creates a huge advantage. It's doing
lots of little things well. Execution and experience
becomes a competitive advantage."
Intuit, Bill Harris,
Former CEO: "We always thought of ourselves as fast
. . . But suddenly everyone was fast . . . The question
we had was, Can we execute? Adapting to new business
cycles meant rethinking certain processes we had grown
J.C. Penney, Allen
Questrom, Chairman and CEO: "The bigger the company,
the more you have to sell the strategy to the organization.
The more people who understand the strategy the more
likely it will get executed."
John H. Harland Company,
Robert J. Amman, Former President and CEO: "While extremely
important, the development of a strategy is not effective
without the means to execute."
Johns Hopkins Medicine,
C. Michael Armstrong, Chairman: "We had a strong quarter...
it represents the execution and operation strengths
of a company that's learning to [meet] its commitments."
Johnstone Supply, Gary
Daniels, Former President and CEO: "Vision is nothing
without action. Reaching the billion dollar sales mark
is a tribute to everyone, our Independent Members, employees
and corporate support people, who committed to a goal
and executed through hard work and diligence."
JP Morgan Chase, David
Lamere, Former CEO: "We are extremely well positioned
to produce results for our clients and shareholders
by having built a team of talented people who are not
only excellent in their execution but are also people
Kana Software, Inc.,
Michael Fields, Former CEO: "I'’m pleased with our execution
in the first quarter. Our plan for 2008 is to strengthen
our business execution and technology leadership within
the customer service market."
Kellogg Company, Carlos
M. Gutierrez, Former Chairman and CEO: "The entire organization
is intensely focused on executing our plans, earning
our stripes each and every day."
Kelly Services, Carl
Camden President & CEO: "...another successful
quarter fueled by sustained demand for temporary staffing,
a healthier global economy, and Kelly’s focus on business
execution and operational excellence."
Kohl's, John Herma,
Director: "We do twenty simple things that have impact
when taken together. The key is the consistency of execution."
Lend Lease Corporate Solutions,
Ann McCallum, CEO: "The only limits to growth are those
of imagination and execution."
Levi Strauss & Co.,
Philip Marineau, Chairman: "Market to the greatest share
of opportunity and then execute those ideas flawlessly."
Philippe Kahn, Founder: "In the real world, the toughest
challenge is 'The Business Model and Its Execution.'
An MBA provides a solid foundation. Yet, it must be
coupled with innovation, teamwork and commitment."
Manpower, Jeff Joerres,
Chairman & CEO: "How we're going to execute our
strategy is much more difficult than it used to be,
because we don'’t have the money we used to have and
the time we used to have."
Manpower India, Naresh
Malhan, Managing Director: "Many employers around
the globe are trying to find ways for containing costs
and are cautious about hiring decisions by making do
with the people they have and only resorting to hiring
for positions that they deem critical to their business
R. Quinlan, Former Chairman (Current Dunn & Bradstreet
Director): "Our Execution Strategy identifies seven
initiatives that will provide a 100% experience: hot
and tasty food, fast service, food safety, accurate
orders, friendliness, employee satisfaction and merchandising."
McDonalds, Jim Skinner,
Former CEO and Vice-Chairman: "McDonald's business
around the world remains strong, with dedicated franchises,
committed suppliers and a sophisticated global system
all working together to execute our Plan to Win."
McGraw, Chairman, President and CEO: "The greatest challenge
for tomorrow's CEO lies in their ability to teach. The
impact they can have is being able to take their experience
and relate it in a way that people can better understand
how to go about doing things - how to think more broadly,
how an organization achieves - and what teamwork really
MindShare, Mark Mooradian,
VP and Senior Analyst: "As companies find the Internet
profoundly affecting the way they do business, they
must take the time to develop a long-term strategy that
a highly qualified leader and team can execute."
MokaFive, Inc., Dale
Fuller, Chairman, President and CEO: "We just execute
flawlessly over and over in a single direction."
Morgan Stanley, Judy
Warrick, Senior Advisor, Investment Banking: "Now execution
and humility are in."
Motorola, Kathy Paladino,
Former President of Enterprise Mobility: "...it's knowing
when to invest in an idea, when to cut your losses,
and how to execute on the innovations you pursue that
yields the big payoff…"
Motorola, Mike Zafirovski,
Former President and COO: "Execution is clearly ahead
MSC Software, Bill
Weyand, CEO: "Integrating MSC Software's human
resources activity into one global operation will drive
improved business execution worldwide."
MSCO, Mark Stevens,
Founder and CEO: "Self doubt is what drives you to a
conclusion. Is it the right conclusion? You don't know
until you begin to execute, but you've got to start
MTV, Dr. Drew Pinsky,
Costar: "Don't forget the importance of execution. Even
the most farfetched schemes can become huge successes
if executed correctly."
Neo Pet, Carla Miraldi,
President and CEO: "Strategy execution goes to the fabric
of a company. All the threads have to be woven together
just the right way for the process to work."
New York City Mayor,
Michael Bloomberg: "Hire lieutenants who can get the
job done. Let's just do it."
New York City Public Schools,
Joel Klein, Chancellor: "I'm not especially thin-skinned,
but the things that really bug me are when we execute
Nike, Chris Zook, Head
Global Strategy Practice, Bain & Co.: "The company that
comes up with a formula to find and execute adjacency
moves can bury its competitors. Nike is a case in-point."
NYSE Euronext, Scott
Cutler, EVP: "The market is looking for companies
with three prerequisite characteristics: participation
in a growing industry, business execution, and market
Oracle, Larry Ellison,
CEO: "Execute on virtualization."
Oracle, Mark Hurd,
President: "Execution trumps vision, especially in a
Palm Computing, Ed
Colligan, Former President and CEO: "Sure, we're part
of a big company. But if we keep executing the way we
have been, I can't imagine anyone wanting to screw around
Patagonia, Yvon Chouinard,
Founder: "The point was not to focus on making money:
focus on doing things right, and the profits would come."
Chris Corrigan, Former Managing Director: "I think I'm
risk-averse in terms of value, but not risk-averse in
terms of business execution. I'm probably at the other
end of that spectrum, I take the view you only get one
go at life and business, so you might as well give it
all you've got."
General Patton: "A
good plan violently executed today is better than a
perfect plan executed next week."
The Pep Boys - Manny, Moe
& Jack, Michael R. Odell, President and CEO:
"We are on a mission to rebuild the culture of this
great organization and we will build and grow a profitable
business model to create shareholder value by returning
to our core automotive roots, attending to basic business
execution, and most importantly focusing on our customers."
P.H. Glatfelter Company,
George Glatfelter, Former Chairman and CEO: "We
will continue to focus on supply-side market discipline,
solid business execution and aggressive cost control.
These activities remain top priorities for the entire
PHormulate, Steve Bolton,
Chairman: "We are looking forward to extending
our approach to other aspects of running the company
including state of the art marketing and business process
automation, creating a foundation for efficient business
Pitney Bowes, Murray
Martin, Former President and CEO: "Innovation without
implementation is of no value."
Pitt Theatre, Jeremy
Webber President: "I like to focus on things I
can do something about. I don't have to invent products.
Instead, I focus on business execution, delivering quality
service, and living our vision."
PNC Financial Services Group,
Thomas O'Brien, Director: "The key to our success will
Portland General Electric,
Jim Piro, President, CEO and Director: "Short-term
results can reflect the ability of the company to execute
on its strategy."
Procter & Gamble, A.G.
Lafley Former CEO: "Our challenge was the magnitude
of growth and the desire for more consistent sustainable
execution to deliver more consistent and sustainable
Patrick Kelly, Co-Founder: "It's not how smart you are,
it's how you apply yourself that determines your success."
David A. Jones, Former Chairman and CEO: “It's not an
objective to be No. 1 or No. 2. Our objective is to
execute our model."
RCCL, Harri Kulovaara,
EVP Maritime: "I've been involved in the building of
35 ships. Execution is relatively easy, compared with
The Reader's Digest Association,
Eric W. Schrier, Director: "We must operate beyond individual
comfort zones to ensure that we don't lose focus on
first-rate innovation and execution to keep our traditional
print and direct mail businesses thriving."
Reengineering The Corporation,
James Champy, Co-Author: "High achievers recognize the
connection between quality and value. They see that
social and economic value is created through effective
Royal Dutch Shell,
Peter Voser, CEO: "I like to keep things simple
and clear in the way I run the company. For me the execution
needs to be competitive."
R.R. Donnelley, Direct,
Tim Stratman, CEO: "A good execution plan is an invisible
hand that moves the unimportant stuff out of the way
so that people can focus on what really needs to happen."
Russell Reynolds Associates,
Charles Tribbett III, Co-Leader, CEO/ and Board Services
Practice: "It's one thing to sit around the table and
be passionate and excited about diversity, but it's
another to actually roll up your sleeves and execute
Shell Global Solutions,
Jose Brave, Chief Scientist: "One of Europe's premier
companies has created innovation processes that foster
global collaboration and bridge the critical gap between
new ideas and profitable business execution."
Housenbold, President, CEO and Director: "I created
a culture, shifting us from the mentality of surviving
the dot-com bubble to one of knowing the customer better
than out competition, out-innovating them and out-executing
Siemens AG, Peter Loscher,
President and CEO: "I very much try to implement
an execution culture. For me it's very important to
have an execution culture in place because it's not
about brilliance of strategy."
Silver Lake Partners,
Dave Roux, General Partner: "Money and ideas are easy
to come by. In fact, there's a surplus of money in Silicon
Valley. What's missing is execution."
Southern Company, David
Ratcliffe, CEO: "We have a good strategy and a good
implementation plan, with the right people to get it
Herb Kelleher, Former CEO: "The concept is simple,
but the execution takes a lot of work and a lot of attention."
Spencer Stuart, Tom
Neff, Chairman: "The board should consider giving a
vote of support to the CEO and giving him or her a chance
to execute a viable strategy that may require more time
to implement. CEOs must understand both business strategy
and the process of implementation."
Sprint, William T.
Esrey, Former Chairman (Current General Mills Director):
"The biggest hurdles are execution - We're working with
a number of key vendors - and marketing."
The Stanley Works,
John M. Trani, Former Chairman and CE: , "Those who
learn the art of execution win, and those who do not
Staples, Thomas Stemburg,
Former Chairman and CEO (current Nasdaq Director): "Execution
and detail are everything."
Starbucks, Howard Schultz,
President, CEO and Chairman: "Experience has taught
me that it's easy to talk about values, hard to implement
them, and even harder for an outsider to determine which
values are heartfelt and which are window-dressing."
Steelcase, Jim P. Hackett,
President and CEO: "You won't have the respect of your
peers if you're allowed to sit back and theorize about
a problem without having to do it."
Stephen Sondheim: "Everything
depends on execution, having just a vision is no solution."
SunTrust Banks, Annual
Report: "At SunTrust...success is equally dependent
on execution, and execution is dependent on a good team
working together to put plans into action."
Sunrise Senior Living,
Paul Klassen, Chairman: "A promise to develop and successfully
execute a business strategy that delivers strong results."
Symantec, John W. Thompson, Former Chairman,
CEO: "We have a very motivated and excited team that
has the capability to execute well against the goals
that we've set for ourselves."
William R. (Bill) Nuti, Former President, CEO, COO,
Director: "We're confident of the vision. We're confident
in what we need to do operationally, from a strategy
point of view. We've executed Corporate America's best
practices with respect to organizational and cultural
Todd Abbott, Senior Vice President World Wide Operations:
"With our strategy, Symbol Technologies has the opportunity
to define the enterprise mobility reference architecture
in the market. Now it is up to each one of us to execute."
Synopsys, Aart de Geus,
Chairman and CEO: Defines the Synopsys culture or employer
brand, first as being a technology leader and second
as "an ethical, high-quality company that executes well."
|| "When your presentation
ended, I was energized and inspired to go out and try
something new. On a scale of 1 to 10, yours was a perfect
| General Electric
Target, Robert Ulrich,
Former Chairman and CEO: "It's not rocket science, but people
need to be motivated. It's a more difficult strategy to executive
if you're not."
Dru, Chairman: "Disruption has always been there. The only
difference is people used to talk about it but didn't implement."
Teoco, Atul Jain, Chairman
and CEO: "First to market doesn't always win. It's all about
Textron, Stuart Grief, VP
Strategy and Business Development: "If a company’s doing
poorly, one of the first worthwhile diagnoses is an assessment
of the quality of the strategy and its execution."
The Five Temptations Of A CEO,
Patrick Lencioni, Author: "I think that having a great
vision and mission is only important if you know how to execute.
I’ll take a well-executing company over a visionary one any
The Five Temptations Of A CEO,
Patrick Lencioni, Author: "Many of the CEOs I’ve worked
with over the years secretly see themselves as chief technology,
marketing, sales or innovation officers, and underestimate
the 'execution' part of their role, which is most important."
Thomas Edison: "Vision without
execution is a hallucination."
Tom Peters Group, Tom Peters,
CEO: "The reality in most organizations is that execution
too often turns into talking about execution. It becomes talking
instead of doing. You must build a unified organization that
is quick, bold and knows how to execute."
Tornante Company, Michael
Eisner, CEO: "In addition to having valuable ideas, you must
have an organization that can follow through and execute that
good idea. A lot of people have good ideas, but not that many
do anything about them."
Trendspotting, Robyn Waters,
Speaker and Author (The Hummer and the Mini), "I have
a mantra that I use for implementing great ideas: Make it
real. Keep it simple. Make it happen. Too many great ideas
fall by the wayside for lack of execution."
Tyler Perry Studios, Roger
Bobb, Producer: "You've got to get it right, whatever it takes,
for our vision to be implemented efficiently and instantaneously."
Unisys, Lawrence A. Weinback,
Former Chairman, President, and CEO (Current UBS Director):
"Vision and strategy are important, but the key to success
is execution. What's behind this success? At Unisys, it comes
down to two key factors: focus and execution. Execution is
what will distinguish the winners from the losers. We've also
spent a lot of time communicating and educating people about
the importance of execution."
University of Alabama, Nick
Saban, Coach: "Keep players and coaches focused on execution
yes, another word for process rather than results."
UPS, Tom Weidemeyer, Former
COO (Current Goodyear Director): "When we've had challenges
executing, it's primarily been because we didn't truly understand
the full nature of the undertaking and what it would take
to be successful."
USAA, Robert T. Herres, Former
Chairman and CEO: "It's easy to recognize the need for strategic
planning: getting it right is the hard part."
VF Imageware, Mackey McDonald,
Former Chairman: "...we didn't have to come up with brilliant
ideas we needed brilliant ways of executing good ideas."
Virgin, Sir Richard Branson,
Founder and Chairman: "I can have an idea in the morning and
have it implemented in the evening."
Volvo Financial Services,
Sal Mauro, President and CEO: "The 'Big 5' tool, our appreciation
for speed in decision making and our distaste for bureaucracy
are advantageous to executing our plans decisively."
Walker Dental, Jay S. Walker,
Former Chairman and CEO: "Execution is what keeps you up at
Wall Street Journal, Holman
W. Jenkins, Jr.: [Regarding Michael Eisner, Disney's CEO]
"Disney under Mr. Eisner has proved the military wisdom that,
more than a perfect plan, what counts is energetic, opportunistic
Walt Disney's Four Pillars Of Success:
"I dream, I test my dreams against my beliefs, I dare to take
risks, and I execute my vision to make those dreams come true."
Warnaco, Linda Wachner, Former
CEO: "There are a few people in life who know how to think,
and in our economy, the rewards are sensational for those
people who can make things happen."
WebMD, Jeffrey Arnold, Former
Chairman and CEO (Current Premier Global Services Director):
"What keeps me up at night is that we've made big promises
to big companies, and now we have to execute on them all."
Weiner, Edrich, Brown, Arnold
Brown, Chairman: "If knowledge was power, college professors
would rule the world. Execution is power. Execution is everything."
Wells Fargo, Richard M. Kovacevich,
Former Chairman (On Distribution Strategy): "A vision and
a strategy aren't enough. The long term key to success is
execution. Each day. Everyday. The employees of your company
continue to execute very well. Our success has nothing to
do with planning, it has to do with execution."
Wells Fargo, John Stumpf,
Chairman, President and CEO: "We could leave our strategic
plan on an airplane, and it wouldn'’t matter. It's all about
Westpac, David Morgan, Former
CEO: "The most common reason CEOs fail is due to failures
of execution, by getting too far away from the business. Execution
was, is and always remains the number one priority, the 'must
do' part of the job."
XOJet, Paul Touw, Chairman
and CEO: "Like my father told me, there’s always money
for great ideas and good business execution."
Yahoo! Inc., Jerry Yang,
Co-Founder: "The execution of our business plan has been key
to the company's success.
Zebra Technologies, Anders
Gustafsson, CEO: "Strong business execution led to high
international and North American sales growth for specialty
printing and a sharp increase in our enterprise solutions
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