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Improved Products Through Design-for-Environment Tools

In the past, product development teams were often insulated from other disciplines within the company. Too often, products were developed without adequate input from marketing about customer needs, from manufacturing about realistic and cost–effective production, from the environmental group about...

Organisational Learning and Safety: Breaking the Performance Plateau

Traditionally, companies have improved their safety performance by investing in new technologies, procedures, training, and management systems. But in the past decade, many companies that have continued to invest in building leading-edge safety programmes have reached a performance plateau. Since...

The Business Benefits of Ergonomics

Some managers still think that ergonomics means simply providing a new chair or an antifatigue mat, or having a committee make adjustments to a workstation. In fact, ergonomics can help organisations maximize the capabilities and productivity of their workforces, make wise capital expenditures,...

Technology Valuation - A Milestone on the Path from Art to Science

If you believe that your chief source of sustainable business success is the company's skill, knowledge, and information, you are likely in the forefront of the new economy – an economy fueled by intellectual assets, rather than hard assets. And if you are an executive of a technology–based...

Scenarios and Long-term Visioning: Critical Elements of Technology Strategy

In this high–tech era, technology discontinuities occur in every industry sector. Digital mobile telephony, computer optical storage systems, high performance polymers, biotechnology, and genetic engineering are all examples of the technologies that are changing the world we live in, creating...

A Conversation Breakthrough Technologies: Finding Them and Making Them Happen

John Magee, Arthur D. Little's Chairman of the Board, recently had a discussion with Bernard Lacomis, President of Arthur D. Little Enterprises (ADLE), about the process of developing and licensing new technology. ADLE is a subsidiary of Arthur D. Little that turns ideas – –from many sources – into...

A Conversation Leveraging Best Practices In Petro-Canada

In 1976, the Canadian government sponsored the creation of Petro–Canada as a vehicle for Canadian oil and gas policy and, as it put it at the time, "a window on the oil and gas industry in Canada." Since then Petro–Canada has grown into the second–largest oil company in Canada, with assets worth C$...

Leadership Within Middle Management: A United Nations Example

Until recently, finding a leader was a question of luck, like discovering a rare diamond in a basket of gravel. Today, identifying and developing leaders has become a hard job that requires vision, dedication, and generosity. It is a behavioral process that starts at the top, the moment we accept...

A Conversation Becoming a Global Company: From Kabi to Pharmacia & Upjohn

In 1985, Jan Ekberg became CEO of Kabi, a Nordic pharmaceuticals company that had sales of $250 million and was part of the Procordia group in Sweden. Over ten years he guided the company through a dazzling evolution, as Kabi acquired company after company around the world, culminating in the 1995...

Practicing Leadership: Mastering the Basic Moves

Imagine the following position advertisement in the Wall Street Journal:Wanted: Individual with the skills to be a coach, teacher, cheerleader, hero, visionary, steward, designer, artist, conductor, figurehead, and/or sensitive, caring human being, as circumstances (financial and interpersonal)...