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The High-Speed Company

Creating Urgency and Growth in a Nanosecond Culture

Jason Jennings, Laurence Haughton


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The only way to ensure your company’s success is to change faster on the inside than the world is changing on the outside

No one knows the ins and outs of successful companies better than bestselling author Jason Jennings. Back in 2001, with It’s Not the Big That Eat the Small, It’s the Fast That Eat the Slow, Jennings proved that speed was the ultimate competitive advantage. But in 2015, companies of all sizes still struggle to adapt quickly. They know it’s crucial to their future but need help to get everyone implementing speed and urgency at all levels.

Jennings and his researchers have spent years up close and personal with thousands of organizations around the world—figuring out what makes them successful in both the short and long term. He understands the real challenges that keep more than eleven thousand CEOs, business owners, and executives up at night. And he knows how the best of the best combine speed and growth to deliver five times the average returns to shareholders.

The High-Speed Company reveals the unique practices of businesses that have proven records of urgency and growth. The key distinction is that they’ve created extraordinary cultures with a strong purpose, more trust, and relentless follow-through. These companies burn less energy, beat the competition, and have a lot of fun along the way.

Jennings shows how you can implement the same strategies that have made companies such as CoBank, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Grainger, Henry Schein, Google, and Johnson & Johnson great, including:

   •  Encouraging employees to make the right moves without hesitation. J.M. Smucker has done this well by creating five guiding principles that employees at every level can apply to faster individual decision making.
   •  Doing more to constantly innovate and bring in new customers. Besides spending more than $2 billion on research and development, Procter & Gamble sends its senior executives to the homes of families who use their products in one hundred different countries, to learn their stories and connect with them, gaining fresh insights for new products.
   •  Being transparent about management decisions. Sonic Corp. knows this is the best way to drive trust and engagement with both employees and customers.

Breathe easier. Handle any hurdle. Get things done faster. That’s the way of the high-speed company . . . and Jennings shows you how to build and sustain your own.

Praise For The High-Speed Company: Creating Urgency and Growth in a Nanosecond Culture

“Tough love is the signature of a Jason Jennings book and The High-Speed Company does not flinch in painting a nasty, brutish, and short future for businesses that fail to step up. But the empathetic Jennings doesn’t stop there. He shows how to move forward. His conversations with thousands of CEOs worldwide come through in memorable stories of struggle and learning—and from those, battle-tested strategies and tips for success.”

Rich Karlgaard, publisher, Forbes Magazine and Media, and New York Times bestselling author of The Soft Edge

“Jason Jennings presents a thorough look at what makes a high-speed company. This is a must read for anyone starting a company or running one.”

Dan DiMicco, chairman emeritus and former CEO (2000-2013) of Nucor, North America’s largest steel company, which has paid 166 consecutive quarterly dividends

“When a book claims to show you how to get your company to move fast and right, it had better be written by the sure voice of experience, wisdom, and empathy. Jason Jennings flat-out delivers in The High-Speed Company. He promises that you can open this book anywhere and find insight, inspiration, or instruction. It’s true—and you should devour every page.”

Stan Slap, New York Times bestselling author of Bury My Heart at Conference Room B and Under the Hood

“Hits all points necessary for surefire success, including purpose, values, people, communication, and growth. Building speed into your organization is hard work but it pays off—so get after it and then celebrate!”
Michael Long, chairman, president, and CEO, Arrow Electronics, a $21.4 billion global provider of electronic components and solutions

“Jason has nailed the high-speed path to a high-speed company. Read this book or be left in the dust by your competition.”

Guy Kawasaki, chief evangelist of Canva and author of The Art of Social Media

“A fascinating book on the imperatives of driving urgency and growth. This is a must read for managers who are seeking to steer their companies along the fastest lanes of today’s corporate autobahns. It is lucidly written, easy to read, and packed with memorable stories from high-speed companies. Most important, the authors provide a simple, meaningful, and practical guidebook for revving up speed in so many key areas and winning every important race for your team.”

Harish Bhat, member, Group Executive Council, Tata Sons Ltd., and author of Tata Log. The Tata Group operates in 150 countries, with revenues of $96.8 billion.

Portfolio, 9781591847366, 240pp.

Publication Date: March 17, 2015

About the Author

JASON JENNINGS is a bestselling author of research-based business books, including The Reinventors, Think BIG, Act Small, and Less Is More. USA Today has called him one of the three most in-demand business speakers in the world. He also hosts a free weekly podcast that digs deeper into the material presented in his books. He and his family split their time between Tiburon, California, and Timber Rock Shore in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

Laurence Haughton has served as the SVP and head of research and development for Jennings’s consulting practice and has been Jennings’s writing partner on five

books. He and his family live in New York City.