Summary of Breakthrough: How Great Companies Set Outrageous Objective

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Breakthrough: How Great Companies Set Outrageous Objective book summary
To break through to the next level, your company needs audacious goals — and the strategic determination to achieve them.


6 Overall

5 Applicability

7 Innovation

7 Style


This book aims to show CEOs how to achieve the impossible. Based on a study of 70 companies that managed to accomplish incredibly ambitious goals, it offers a straightforward and, for the most part, lucid set of guiding principles to reach breakthrough success. Author Bill Davidson anchors his prescription in the experiences of real companies and illustrates each point with copious anecdotes. Although he strays now and then into the jargon of the academic tribe, these digressions are rare and excusable. His case histories and tactical advice offer something of value to every CEO or senior manager. recommends this book to executives whose companies are trapped in strategic dead-ends and desperate to blast out, or to executives who would rather act before a crisis really blossoms.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How extraordinary companies make amazing breakthroughs; and
  • What the "Spirit of Enterprise" is, and what you can achieve with it.


The Breakthrough PhenomenonBy 1992, IBM seemed stymied by circumstance despite its history of massive strategic leaps. IBM had introduced the great mainframe computers and depended upon them for decades, although the firm did not stagnate. IBM invented the personal computer, for example, and moved aggressively...
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About the Author

Bill Davidson was a tenured professor of management at the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California from 1985-1998. He is the author of The Amazing Race and 2020 Vision. He is chairman of the consultancy MESA Research.

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