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Book Description

DHL: From Startup to Global Upstart is the story of a startup that became the first worldwide logistics service organization, fighting regulation, trade restrictions, customs, and many other technical issues to develop processes that have stood the test of time to become the accepted norm in delivery throughout the world. It is a story of using "soft powers," persuasion, and ingenuity, working with, and around, emerging technologies to eliminate barriers to success. This book provides an extraordinary look into how a little startup with grit and perseverance succeeded in the face of overwhelming odds and revolutionized many of what are now accepted transportation and supply chain practices.

Po Chung, DHL International co-founder, and Roger Bowie, former DHL Worldwide Services Director, discuss how DHL paved the way for one day international package delivery and how they have maintained their global leadership position against powerful American titans.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright
  4. Contents
  5. Chapter 1: Born Global
    1. The Little Company Which was Seen as Illegal in Every Country
  6. Chapter 2: The 70s
  7. Chapter 3: The Start-up Years
  8. Chapter 4: The Start-up Years: Business Innovation
    1. Door to Door, Desk to Desk
    2. Just Like Taking It There Yourself
    3. Still Expensive, However, for a Start-Up ...
    4. ... and Increasingly Complex
    5. So, Try and Keep It Simple
    6. So Simple, Almost Too Good to Be True
    7. Proof was Needed, and So Proof was Provided
    8. With the Airlines as Friends (Albeit Fair-Weather)
  9. Chapter 5: Innovation and Its Broader Impact on Business Dynamics
    1. The Infectious Nature of Speed
    2. Size Doesn’t Matter, Content Does
    3. Keeping It Dense
    4. But Keeping It Simple
    5. And Everyone Sells
    6. Service Is Not Servitude
    7. Creating a Time-Based Value Proposition
    8. Challenging Traditional Work Habits
    9. And in the Spirit of Partnership
  10. Chapter 6: Cultural Dynamics: What was Going on Here?
    1. Against All Odds
    2. Ahead of its Time
    3. It was also the People
    4. An Emerging Company Culture
    5. The Nature of the Business Helped
    6. But it Wasn’t Just the Business
  11. Chapter 7: Barely Legal—Early Regulatory Battles
    1. First, What Kind Of Business Is This?
    2. Ah, You Mean You Carry Mail?
    3. And What About This “Smuggling” Theory?
    4. Airline Schizophrenia
    5. Okay, Understand The Challenges With Post Offices, Customs And Airlines, But Surely You Were Doing Everything Else By The Book?
  12. Chapter 8: 1970s Vignettes and Bloopers
    1. Strange Bedfellows
    2. Caught Napping
    3. Plenty of Space, and Not So Much
    4. Strange Passengers
    5. Delivery Heroics
    6. It’s Tough Being Ahead of Your Time
  13. Chapter 9: Transition
    1. Taken Off, but Not Yet Landed
    2. A Biological Phenomenon
    3. With Intuitive, Instinctive Leadership
    4. Which Attracted and Inspired
    5. Cowboys with Wing
    6. And an Ounce of Luck
    7. Underpinned by Trust
    8. A Common Language
    9. And the Rule of Common Law
    10. But it was Precarious
  14. Chapter 10: The 80s
    1. Economic and Political Turbulence…
    2. Presaging Fundamental Geopolitical Change
    3. Policed by America
    4. With Asia Awakening
    5. Business Models Must Change
    6. A New Age of Consumerism
    7. And Speed to Market
    8. The End of History?
    9. Perhaps a Hybrid Would be the Answer
  15. Chapter 11: The Walden Years—Structure and process
    1. Nascently Global
    2. But Not Sustainable
    3. Structure to Support a Growth Strategy
    4. With A New Confidence
    5. Coming Out
    6. And Cash is the King
  16. Chapter 12: Business Innovation
    1. Getting it There in No Time at All
    2. Tentative Steps to Expand the Offering
      1. If you can get to the internationally remote places, why not just down the road?
    3. Europe Overnight
    4. And What About a Second Brand?
    5. Early Computerization
    6. What Aided and Abetted Also Threatened
    7. But Also Provided Opportunity
    8. Building a Brand
    9. Ongoing Geographical Expansion
    10. Less than Door-to-door
    11. Early Steps in Logistics
    12. Answer the Phone, Dammit!
  17. Chapter 13: Business Context—What Was Going on Here?
    1. A New Era of Globalization Begins
    2. What was DHL Carrying?
    3. This was an Outbound Phenomena
    4. The Information Age Beckoned, but Expensively
    5. Airports Grew Up
    6. Strategic Disconnect
  18. Chapter 14: Business Context—Competition Explodes
    1. Competition? (What, Really?)
    2. Finally, Strength Through Numbers
    3. But in Context
    4. Those Pesky Airlines Again
    5. The “Empires” Try to Strike Back
    6. But FedEx Strikes First
    7. And Starts to Force the Pace
    8. The Enemy of My Enemy can be my Friend
  19. Chapter 15: Regulatory Battles
    1. Postal Battles Heat Up
    2. Progress with Customs
    3. Tax, Cashflows and Blocked Funds
    4. The Dutch Sandwich
  20. Chapter 16: Cultural Dynamics
    1. Heroism
    2. It Wasn’t Just the Cowboys
    3. Growing Up
    4. Some Contextual Frameworks
    5. And Perhaps a Modern Example of Another, More Natural Law, is in Play Here
    6. Change Agents
    7. Pirates of the Caribbean (Never Waste a Good Crisis)
    8. Expat Versus Local
    9. Persistence at Heathrow, with Help from the US
  21. Chapter 17: Anecdotes, Accidents, and Altruism
    1. Excellence Discovered
    2. Going the Extra Mile
    3. Going Many Extra Miles
    4. Making Calls was a Shoe-In
    5. The Green Bags must go Through
    6. Shenanigans in Bahrain
    7. The Future Sometimes Takes Longer
    8. DHL Never Sleeps
    9. Never Fear, DHL is Here
    10. Be Bold, Be Fearless, Be an Upstart
    11. The Worm Turns
    12. Unblocking the Funds
    13. Thank Goodness for Unintended Consequences
    14. Unintended Consequences Version Two
    15. Bill Walden’s Office
    16. Crazy Texans
    17. Negotiations in China
    18. Pat Lupo’s Story: The Most Employee-Motivational Thing We Did
  22. Chapter 18: Adolescence to Adulthood
    1. Mission Almost Accomplished
    2. A New Man in Charge
    3. Bring in the Suits
    4. A Deal Made in Heaven, But
    5. Finally, A Head Office
    6. Organizational Innovation
    7. An Ongoing Emphasis on Data Networks
    8. And a New Sense of Mission
    10. FedEx Loses a Battle
    11. With the Best Good Will in the World, it Didn’t Work Out
    12. The Ultimate Compliment
  23. Chapter 19: Powers
  24. Chapter 20: From Start-up to Upstart to the Most International Company in the World
  25. Chapter 21: Epilogue: The 2008–16 Reincarnation
    1. Market Growth
    2. A Much and Long Desired Prize Becomes the Bogeyman
    3. Somebody Press the Reset Button, Quickly
    4. Focus, Connect, Grow: Pressing the button
    5. We Have a Strategic Plan: It’s Called Doing Things
      1. Ubiquity
      2. Motivated People: The CIS story
      3. Discipline, Process and the Power of Routine
      4. Great Leadership
      5. Ubiquity again
    6. Results are the only True Sign of Excellence
    7. Going Global, Staying the Course: The Powers Revisited
      1. Focus, discipline and routine
      2. Synthesis
      3. Renewal
  26. Index