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The pioneer of “open-book management” (described in the best-selling classic The Great Game of Business), Jack Stack, and twelve other managers began their journey in 1982, when they purchased their factory, SRC, from its struggling parent company. SRC then grew 15 percent a year, the company’s stock price rocketed from 10 cents to $81.60 per share, and the company added almost a thousand new jobs. In the process, Stack discovered that long-term success required constant innovation--and that building a culture of ownership involved much more than paying bonuses, handing out stock options, or setting up an employee stock ownership plan. In a successful ownership culture, every employee had to take the fate of the company as personally as an individual owner would. Achieving that level of commitment was extraordinarily difficult, but Stack realized that the payoff would be enormous: a company that was consistently able to outperform the market.
A Stake in the Outcome concentrates on practice, rather than just theory. Stack draws from his own experience at SRC to show how any company can teach its employees to think and act like owners, including how to implement an effective equity-sharing program, how to promote continuous learning at every level of the organization, how to fire up employees’ competitive juices, how to broaden the concept of leadership and delegate responsibility for the business, and how to build a workforce that is fast on its feet and ready to take advantage of every opportunity.
Stack's methods and success have become the model for many of the bold experiments in business today, as leading-edge companies turn upside down the management paradigm that has dominated corporate thinking for more than one hundred years. Southwest Airlines is perhaps the most visible practitioner, soaring through economic downturns while its competitors slash their budgets and order massive layoffs, but one can find other pioneers of this new approach in almost every industry and market niche. The secret to these companies success is that they foster a culture of ownership that allows them to tap into the most underutilized resource in business today--namely, the enthusiasm, intelligence, and creativity of their employees.
“At a time when doubt shrouds the U.S. economy, Jack Stack’s book is a beacon of hope. It is a little bit about technique and a lot about unleashing the good sense of the American worker.” –Tom Peters
“[Jack Stack’s] open-book approach is generating intense interest among businesses large and small. . . . About 1,500 companies, including many Fortune 500 concerns, have toured [SRC] to learn about the merits of disclosing everything to rank-and-file workers.”–The Wall Street Journal
“The results at SRC are nothing short of breathtaking. The Great Game has resulted in one of the most competitive companies I've come across in all my years at Inc.” –George Gendron, Editor in Chief, Inc.
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
Acknowledgments • Chapter 1 A Culture of Ownership • Chapter 2 Dreaming • Chapter 3 The Design of a Business • Chapter 4 The Hazards of Employee Thinking • Chapter 5 How We Began to Open Our Books and Build Our Own Ownership Culture • Chapter 6 Manageable Failures • Chapter 7 What's in a Game? • Chapter 8 You Can't Trust Success • Chapter 9 The Little Secret of Ownership • Chapter 10 Crossing the Great Divide • Chapter 11 The True Profit of Business • Chapter 12 A Question of Stewardship • Chapter 13 Reality Testing • Chapter 14 Passing the Baton • Epilogue: The Long Road • Index