In Search of Sustainable High Performance
Paper in proceedings, 2009

Quarterly capitalism has drawn with it an immense critique of the effects it has had on shortsighted management of firm performance. If we look over decades, few organizations have achieved sustainable high performance. As Charles O’Reilly points out, the life expectancy of an American company is much less than the average American citizen. There are exceptions. Hewlett Packard achieved sustained high performance for five decades through the early 1990s. Southwest Airlines has achieved it for over thirty years. In the professional services industry McKinsey stands out. The question that concerns CEOs and management theorists is how sustainable high performance can be achieved. Our ambition in this symposium is to put together leading thinkers – Professors Michael Beer, Jay Galbraith, Charles Heckscher and Charles O’Reilly III - to explore their most recent ideas on the requisite design elements of firms aspiring to sustainable high performance as well as means for developing such organizations.

matrix organizations

high commitment

collaborative enterprise

ambidexterity

sustained performance

Author

Tobias Fredberg

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Entrepreneurship and Strategy

Michael Beer

Nathaniel Foote

Jay Galbraith

Charles Heckscher

Charles III O'Reilly

Academy of Management Conference, Chicago, August 2009

Subject Categories

Business Administration