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"Just when you think you've developed the strategy for success, a new technology emerges, a new competitor enters, or fickle consumers turn their focus to the next 'must have' product," writes Hugh Courtney, co-leader of McKinsey's Global Strategy Practice, in 20/20 Foresight: Crafting Strategy in an Uncertain World [Harvard Business School Press; 224 pp.; $29.95). Since 9/11, we've all learned how uncertain the world really is.

So what do you do when faced with radically changed conditions? Courtney acknowledges that sometimes "sticking to your knitting" works--at least in stable markets, and while auto is somewhat more stable than other industries, nowadays one can't be in the least bit complacent. 20/20 Foresight is not a book in which the author holds forth on change in pompous phraseology. Instead, Courtney provides a step-by-step methodology, a four-level approach (define, frame, analyze, monitor and update) that can help bring you to the point of as little residual uncertainty as possible. "Residual uncertainty"? As Courtney puts it, "Residual uncertainty is not what you don't know--it's what you can't know." It is something we must all learn to deal with. And Courtney's methodology is an able aid.
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Author:Vasilash, Gary S.
Publication:Automotive Design & Production
Article Type:Book Review
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Feb 1, 2002
Words:195
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