Lead your business to operational excellence with five things done right
This book positions operational leadership where it deserves to be: as a separate domain of business management and the prime driver for consistent lasting business success. Operational leadership is a top management job - delegating it equals abdication from accountability for business results. To do this task well (which is hard and difficult work) business leaders must do five things right: 1) Set one single operational goal (not many KPIs or scorecard items), 2) Define constraint focused operational plans (not by top-down planning, but giving each unit its own, specific operational plan), 3) Meticulously lead the execution of each operational plan, 4) Adjust each unit's plan in agile operational sprints, 5) Lead execution of Plan-Execute-Check cycles for each unit and the development of strong culture of operational excellence.
I was born 1938 in Graz (Austria), am married, with two daughters and four grandchildren. I am an avid biker, skier and photographer and live in Geneva, Switzerland. I studied petroleum engineering at the University of Leoben, Austria and then continued as Assistant at the Institute of Mathematics. In that role I worked with computers for the first time - which was the beginning of my career in computer business. In 1964 I started to work for AEG-Telefunken (then a GE OEM) and then joined Honeywell (Computer Operations Europe). In 1974 I moved to Hewlett Packard. There, I enjoyed a career in sales management and quality management, where I had the honor and pleasure to guide the European computer business unit to win the HP President's Quality Award, awarded by the late Lew Platt, then HP President and CEO. My last assignment before retiring from HP was operational planning manager for HP's global accounts business. In that job I started to apply TOC (theory of constraints) methods to sales organizations - with special focus on selling to key accounts. During my time at HP, as part of my job, I consulted with many companies, sharing HP practices in operational leadership. After retiring from HP in 2001 I began a second career as top management consultant, specializing in TOC (theory of constraints) based operational leadership. In this role, I served top management of more than 30 companies from small start-ups to large multinational corporations in information technology, finance, machine engineering, and pharmaceuticals. For several years, I also taught operational leadership in a FIBAA certified postgraduate course for business managers, at the University of Graz, Austria. In 2002 with my friend, partner and long time HP colleague at HP Bill Woehr we wrote the book Unblock the power of your sales force!, which introduces the theory of constraints for the domain of sales leadership. The book was also published in German and Japanese.