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While he won’t rule out further acquisitions, he says PSA doesn’t need to grow dramatically to be successful. “More than volumes, profitability is the most important element,” he says. “I prefer agility and efficiency to being the biggest car group.” Bloomberg Businessweek, September 3, 2018, a French tuneup for German cars. Photo: Joe Wilssens Photography

For years we were obsessed with no longer being number one and we wanted to be number one again in our industry. We had a few bad years and a turn over of senior staff but we ended up with a great company president. He was quickly promoted to COO of the corporation and was, we all felt, the heir apparent to become the next CEO. He didn’t get the job as the board picked a retired executive with the media nickname of “Fast Eddie” for his handling of the financial questions at earnings calls.

At an all-hands meeting, the now serving president who had been promoted from within the company made a comment about producing more products to be number one again. The COO commented to him in front of everyone that profitability needed to come before numbers. The new president who supposedly reported to the COO waved it off and looked at the new CEO and said something along the lines of that wasn’t a big concern. Within a year the COO left to become the CEO of another company.

Both the CEO and president were gone in a few years and the company was sold off in pieces as they had faded further behind in their industry.

Many years ago General Electric made a turnaround by no longer saying that they would only be in industries where they could be number one or two. This came after a revelation that one did not have to be the top dog in an industry to be profitable and for it to be worth competing in that space. They had concluded that they had let a lot of opportunities go by when only aiming to be the best at least in terms of numbers in their industry.

Does your project bring benefits to you, your team, the company and the world on its own merits or will it only be considered successful if it becomes the next big thing?

Thank you for sharing!