Since leaving Corporate America, I have been less interested in what Fortune magazine has to say. The profiles are predictable. It seems to be expanding into a lifestyle magazine for the executive. In addition to cars and tech, they now recommend CDs. They have even gone as for a copying the Wall-Street off-beat story in their “This Just In” column.
Having said all that, I still find myself reading it every two weeks. I have been pleasantly surprised with articles in the last two issues.
The cover story from the July 7th issue is “The 10 Greatest CEOs of All Time” [link-subscription]. The piece was written by Jim Collins, author of Built to Last and Good to Great. He takes a historical look at business leaders who truly impacted the companies they led. You won’t find Jack or Lou on this list. Collins says you have you wait at least 10 years to have the proper perspective on a CEO’s tenture.
Speaking of Jim Collins, I found another article in Fortune Small Business from back in March. From the America’s Classic Companies issue, Collins is interviewed about his observations of the world’s great entrepreneurs. They also get commentary from Scott Cook at Intuit and Bernie Marcus at Home Depot. Collins’ three talking points are:
- Always Have a Hero
- You Aren’t What You Sell
- Mark Your Words, Then Hang Them Up For All To See
Andy Grove has written a piece for the August 11th issue. In “Churging Things Up”, Grove discusses “what happens to industries when a new technology changes the game, usually providing an order of magnitude – “10X” – improvement in cost-effectiveness.” He uses some example from his days at Intel, as well as the AT&T of 1907 and no longer existent Napster. He thinks healthcare is the next candidate for a 10X change.