Chapter 4Retool Your Operations

You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.

—Christopher Columbus

At the peak of their success in 2011, with a record $30 billion in loan origination, the top twenty-five leaders of Quicken Loans gathered for an urgent two-day, all-hands-on-deck off-site meeting. Mobile phones were silenced. All other meetings were cancelled. This was a critical session in the company’s evolution.

Most companies have meetings with this level of importance when things have gone very, very wrong: preparing for massive layoffs or facilitating damage control when the stock price tanks, for example. But this was a different kind of meeting. The leaders had cleared their busy schedules and ...

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