CHAPTER 8

Avoiding the Plateaus and Canyons

Balancing Between Growth and Profitability

Avoiding a plateau or canyon can be one of the toughest jobs for leadership, because it requires seeing the coming declines in products or business lines and replacing them before the decline happens. It takes constant innovation and pushing past complacency and loss of focus.

Most businesses, if around long enough, will experience a plateau at some point. The response to the plateau will determine if the company resumes its growth or goes out of business. Many times, a CEO replacement is necessary to get back on track.

I want to swing back to Ford at this point, because they have gone through this cycle many times in the last two decades. Most of the trips ...

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