Saturday, December 30, 2006

the standard ENTREPRENEURial plan

From years of studying and doing, I'd like to share the three basics of entrepreneurship. These can apply to almost any change. New project, companies, organizations, divisions, things and its...

Oh, the truth is that I just re-read my post and after finding some typos I decided to leave in (assuming that the unwritten blog rule is no editing), I decided to add this topic because I hate being dishonest.

Continuing from the last post where I said I'd get to this topic last, here it is:


If you can mix these up and time them right, the theory is that you can accomplish anything.

I quickly learned that writing a book looks like a solo act, but impact is correlated to the size and quality of the team. In other words, for a best seller, I need people. For a company you need a founding team (PS most lasting companies divorce or lost one or more key players early on). I have some ideas for some people in my network to match the following key positions, but only time will tell: EDITOR, COVER DESIGNER, PUBLICIST, POINT WOMAN OR MAN INSIDE ONE OF THE BIG 6 HOUSES AND OF COURSE AN AGENT.

Then there's people like a lawyer, accountant, computer expert, manager, etc. There's also another 100 troops most importantly interviewees and organizational supporters. In other words, I need a celebrity that drives a hybrid and someone inside a company that's behind me.

Do you get the point? You need a solid team more than money or ideas to follow an idea to the moon. The theories say that this is the most important part of the entrepreneurial plan.

The takeaway here is that you need to get PERMISSION from people to put their bios in your plan BEFORE you even start your plan. This is the catch 22 in entrepreneurship. The saying about integrity over smarts, connections and school you graduated from play here.

I'm not sure what I'm going to do in this people area, but at least I've identified the key roles. So consider this a casting call. If you are interested in any of the roles above or any others I forgot, please reply to this post. Thank you!

For me this is the easy part. Eventually I'll post dozens of plans and ideas to prove that. And that will only be two years worth. I don't know how to teach this. I'm a natural. I can naturally shut my brain down through meditation BUT usually let it run. All I can say is that the more the brain runs free, ideas just seem to flow.

Ideas are kind of like watching TV with 300 channels. If you have a cable network hooked into a satelitte that can receive information from all over the world, you'll get plenty of ideas.

IF YOU WANT IDEAS, make sure your antennas are ALWAYS UP and ALWAYS ON. I'm an extremist, but it's the little things that move my world. The way the shadows fall or the KIND of bird that comes over to my bench in the park...

No coment here. I've never had any. The theory says if you have a GREAT TEAM and a GOOD or GREAT IDEA the capital or money flows. I hope to test this theory again, and believe that timing is the wild card here...

Thank you again for reading!

first book PROPOSal

Week 2 recap: this entry will summarize the 2nd week on the path from writer to author. I picked up a used copy of "how to write a book proposal," by Michael Larsen, on Amazon after last week's post, and most of this post comes out of my take aways from the first 100 pages.

It's an excellent book of ideas for writers looking to become authors. There's actually more ideas than any one person can pursue, so I'm going to have to break down today's post into four sections: WHAT I'VE DONE, WHAT I HOPE TO DO, FEARS and DECISIONS that I hope come true.

It's been a good week. (By the way, when I give lists or write in topics, I try to rank things from most important on down). The highlight was sending in my 180 page thesis to Library of Congress
Copyright Office
101 Independence Ave SE
Washington, DC 20559-6000. With a simple one page form and a $45 check with $2.21 postage, I went for a copyright. Funny, it sounds so easy here at this blog, but the mental trauma over the past years never really forsaw this moment. Closure and endings always seem anticlimatic for me.

Anyway, the thesis is in the mail and according to the website at I should get back a receipt in 4 months. It's a pretty interesting website. I recommend it for budding authors, filmakers, bloggers, media types and even IT people into content.

The next step I took to secure my content, was to register a .com ($4.99/yr) and a cheap .info ($2.99/yr) related to the name for the book. I found those cheap sites by doing multiple searches using keywords cheap domain name sometimes combine with host.

Of course the next most important thing from today's perspective (it might become much more important in the future) was read the first 100 pages of Larsen's 3rd edition. With his ideas and some day dreaming and a Eureka moment, I made a few decisions I'll get to shortly...

really has to do with shooting for the impossible, a best seller. My logic is that shooting for a best seller will actually produce better results than shooting for a few thousands copies sold out of a small business I start or something. The reason being is that the experience is usually more valuable than the thing or it, from the perspective of having no connections.

See, I have the opposite problem as corporate America. Mine is too many good ideas and no teams or resources to implement them. So shooting for the top should yield an interesting path if nothing else.

Back to writing my first book...Larsen's book is chock full. So I had to choose a few things that stood out for me. I think the most important things I can do by myself with a few bucks are: Website, Blog network, Read, Bookeeping and then the standard entrepreneurial plan I'll get to last.

A personal website is pretty easy these days. You can lease a domain name and get a starter website for a year with all the software you need for ten bucks or so. My plan is to get a website that breaks down the content I've produced. Simply images that link to other websites.

Some thoughts are some of the 20 years of song lyrics at myspace (bad idea?) shot by scanner on napkins and stuff, add a little poetry maybe. Another link will point to, my professional bio. I hope to rewrite that into all writer stats. What else... Oh, a link to my eBay Power Seller operations. Maybe a link to some entries at Wikicars and several blogs I respond to. Also probably a link to my hobby website. Oh, and maybe a link to my career as a tax preparer (writer), etc.

A blog network is something I'm still trying to figure out. I'm not sure what's going on out there in search engine world, but I do know one thing that's very strange. When you conduct the exact same seach and click search over and over, you may notice sometimes that the results are different. Sometimes different every second. Why?

I'm not sure. My hunch is that the internet is changing faster than it's growing. Most people are obsessed with bandwidth and growth. I'm thinking change is the really the only contant. Change is scary. What you put up yesterday, may mean nothing today. That would explain why some prominent magazines have suggested that blogging for dollars means 7 days a week 12 blogs a day.

To me, that just means quantity over quality. My strategy is quality. So my blogs will be ranked, thought out for a week and sporadic. Hopefully they have some sort of quality, we'll find out later...

Reading and bookeeping are essential for any enterprising or entrepreneurial or indi contractor or business owner, etc. I've been trying to read more. For the first time I've realized that I cannot keep up with the growth of content. This is depressing that I've admitted that I can't read everything. So my response to a friend who gave me a ride back from the temple today who asked, "so you're a reader?" I said no, I'm hoping to become an author. Yes I read, but I'm more of an avid writer than reader.

Oh, I should define writing as (ranked by volume): emails, academic assignments, web, business communications, song lyrics, poems, journals, a long research report and now blogs. That is not the typical portfolio of someone who wrote a century ago. Most of my writing is live in real time and unedited... Can you imagine using a typewriter?

The last of the four things I did this past week to prepare for that first book was bookeeping. Actually I did my 2004 taxes. I didn't owe, but had never filed. Going through a year of transactions as an eBayer with a seller's permit wasn't too fun. But now that it's over, I realize that it's a reality with writing. So, I'm preparing my books for filing a 3rd Schedule C in 2006 as a writer and online book seller.

FEARSare usually outnumbered but somehow tend to linger in the brain closer to the front. Most of what Larsen wrote is doable with committment and time. The only area I feel that some are born with and some are not is public speaking professionalism. To go bigtime and payoff my student loans, I might have to start speaking. A stat stuck with me. It's a definate takeaway.

You can assume in your book proposal, that you sell 1 out of every 4 attendees a book, at each speaking engagement. Oh, and you have to go on tour nationwide to really make an impact. Every large city, with large organizational connections, etc. You really have to be a solo rock store.

The bottom line is that with all the blogs, hits, articles, books you read, plans, money, websites and fans in your hometown, you really won't go best seller unless you tour. I thought touring was for rock stars. Oh yes, I had that dream once... Anyway, that's a scary thought. Gussied up in suit and tie hoping on planes with my last buck and pushing my book like a traveling salesman...

Maybe I can do that, maybe not. Since I know I can't do it well without education and training and luck, it's scary...

CAN WE FINISH THIS BLOG YET? OH YAH, DECISIONS: I decided on the title, well I have to thank Dr. Norma Carr-Ruffino for that. But in the shower the other day, I discovered the beginning of what I call the tagline or part after the colon.

This is really tough. Readers give a cover a few seconds. The words have to speak to all. It's not nailed down, but I have the mindset and topics. Global, people and big business.

I can't give it all away, but I can say that early on, well in fact it's only been a week (writing this feels like a month ago), that, I've decided on early and powerful versions of a TITLE, TAGLINE and COVER!!!

Thanks for stopping by, I'm flattered and appreciate your time!!!

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Why isn't efficiency part of a BEST ENGINE?

In response to
Ward’s 10 Best Engines Reviewed (Mostly)
Posted by: Matt Vella on December 07 at

I left the following comment
right at the end of cheaper gas...

John Acheson
December 28, 2006 12:16 AM

What are the metrics for best? I'd like to argue that it should be one metric, efficiency. For every 10 gallons of gas, most engines burn up 7 or 8 right? Why aren't we measuring this? Why isn't it part of being a "best engine?"

Friday, December 22, 2006


This blog is the end of beginnings. It marks a transition: a point where our decisions will affect the rest of my life. Parachutes will open or I may fall. Risks are everywhere and truth is my compass. Thank you for your support.

This first entry comes 7 days after closing a door. It was a big door at the end of a winding hallway or more like highway. On one hand, I handed it a stack of paperwork and on the other hand, I'm supposed to be a master.

A master of what? Business Administration! What's that, organizing, controlling and something else right? It's called a MBA for short, and it's supposed to mean something bigger and better. Something like, you're going to get rich, or you're successful, or you can run a company and manage big businesses. So much for the MBA, I started a blog, not a company. But you know what; I finished off the master's with a project I'm pretty darn proud of. It was what many call a "thesis." Technically, it was a "MBA project, culminating experience or research report."

It was and can continue to be the greatest work of my life with your help. I spent 6 years in 2 MBA programs studying everything from accounting to management, from how to run a retail shop to how the largest corporations operate and affect our planet. Anyway, the point is that the "project" went through many ideas and phases. This blog will capture this path

First a dealership idea and business plan to start up an automaker. The dream was to manufacturer Made in USA open source hybrids with Japanese components, Indian IT and American muscle and ingenuity. Then it turned into a case study. A snapshot from Bill Ford releasing the world's first hybrid SUV to stepping down as CEO. Finally, after 2 years of research and an estimated 1,000 pages of reading, it got rewritten again. And thanks to my professor, a real idea came up.

This is the story of her idea to turn thesis into book. I officially dedicate this blog to all writers hoping to be authors. I've been researching; scribbling and writing for years, but have never shared much of anything with anyone. From poems to song lyrics to "The Hybrid Phenomenon," it's time to open new doors...This 1st blog and 1st post closes the door on a 30 year run as a student... I look forward to the many doors and paths behind them... Who knows where they will lead???

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Toyota has a secret weapon...

Reader Comments
John Acheson
December 19, 2006 03:24 PM

Toyota has a secret weapon. It's that old MBA term called "kaizen" or continuous improvement. But, which bottom line matters? One way is through the continuous improvement of vehicle efficiency. Porsche's hybrid circa 1900 got 83% efficiency and only slung 2 of every 10 gallons of petrol into the atmosphere. But the billion internal explosion engines that run around Earth today waste 8 barrels of oil for every 10 pulled out of the ground. That was until the funny looking little Prius came along...The 2nd gen released to the states was reported at 32% efficiency by Toyota. It got another barrel of oil to the rear wheels. Then in five short years at 1% continuous improvement per year, the 3rd gen Prius hit showrooms at a phenomenal 37% vehicle efficiency. After declining an estimated .5% per year from the 1900's to 20% for most of man's billion vehicles, the Prius went backwards...Well; actually the Prius jumped into the future and delivered 5 points of improvement! Taking into consideration the 1,000 engineers that threw out 80 designs to get to the 1st gen Prius, this improvement is astounding! Kaizen can be used in improving assembly and manufacturing, but what about improving operating costs for the user... Toyota has a secret weapon: putting money in the pockets of its customers. By saving foreign barrels of oil, domestic gallons of gas, and lowering your bills from your local mechanic, Toyota's secret weapon puts money in its customer's pockets.

Toyota edges closer
Posted by: Ian Rowley on December 17

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The Hybrid Phenomenon APPENDIX D: GLOSSARY

AF Alternative fuel i.e. natural gas, ethanol, alcohol
AFV Alternative Fuel Vehicle i.e. taxis powered by natural gas
B5 5% biodiesel 95% diesel fuel
B20 20% biodiesel 80% diesel fuel
Big 3 DaimlerChrysler, Ford, General Motors
Big 5 DaimlerChrysler, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Toyota
CAFE Corporate Average Fuel Economy
CARB California Air Resources Board
CEO Chief Executive Officer
CH4 Methane
CO Carbon Monoxide
CO2 Carbon Dioxide
CUV Cross Utility Vehicle
E10 10% Ethanol 90% gasoline fuel
E85 85% Ethanol 15% gasoline fuel
E100 100% Ethanol
EPA Environmental Protection Agency
EU European Union
EV Electric Vehicle, i.e. golf carts, buses, Ford Think, GM EV-1, Tesla
FCV Fuel Cell Vehicle, considered a hybrid in this report
FFV Flexible Fuel Vehicle, i.e. E85 and gasoline compatible
FT Fisher-Trophsch
GHG Greenhouse Gases
GM General Motors Corporation
H2 Hydrogen
HC Hydrocarbons
HEV Hybrid Electric Vehicle
HOV High Occupancy Vehicle
ICE Internal Combustion Engine
MPG Miles per U.S. Gallon of fuel, i.e. diesel, gasoline, E85
MPH Miles per Hour
NEV Neighborhood Electric Vehicle
NOx Oxides of Nitrogen
OPEC Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries: Algeria, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Venezuela and
PHEV Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle
R&D Research and Development
SI Spark Ignition
SUV Sports Utility Vehicle

The Hybrid Phenomenon ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS


To my parents, Jim and Yoko. I’d like to give a special thanks to Dr. Norma Carr-Ruffino, Jordan McCormack and Susan Strehler for editing; Briana Reynolds and Miwa Amano Acheson for design; and Olivier LePord for photography.
I’d like to acknowledge those that contributed interviews, as well as the professors who helped on the project and guided my understanding of business and management: Dr. Baack, Dr. Castaldi, Dr. Gilinski, Dr. Hendrix, Dr. Houwink, Dr. McCline, Dr. Sengupta, Dr. Silverman, Dr. Sullivan, Dr. Verma, Dr. Wardlow, and the late Dr. Jenner. I would like to include a special acknowledgement to Dr. Carr-Ruffino for her guidance and experience writing books. Her idea that this could become a book was probably the most important reason why I finally finished.
Finally, I would like to thank the friends who stood by me throughout my master’s journey. It’s been a challenging mountain: six years of studies at two MBA programs, five different addresses, starting and closing small businesses, two marriages and the coming and going of my first (see Figure 18) and only hybrid.
Finishing this project marks one of the greatest accomplishments of my life. I hope in some way, this body of work helps people make the world a better place through green transportation and sustainable business.

The Hybrid Phenomenon PREFACE


The first of three ideas that led to this culminating experience came out of passion and necessity. In 2003, I was faced with a 350 mile move. Somehow, I was going to have to make a 700 mile commute to try and finish grad school. While shopping for a high mileage car, I was immediately drawn to the first hybrid released in America. The Honda Insight was rated at 70 MPG and got better mileage than the Prius at highway speeds.
Hybrid curiosity got me interested in what else was happening in the auto industry. After decades of working on cars and several years of entrepreneurial experience and studies, I realized right away that the hybrid was connected to a larger opportunity. It was preceded by what Dr. McCline, professor of entrepreneurship at San Francisco State University (SFSU), called the three Cs: change, chaos and confusion.
I felt that the industry was ready for new players and technologies. In the months before the move from San Francisco to Los Angeles, I approached several professors with the first idea for my master’s project: a business plan to start a hybrid automaker. Dr. Wardlow, a professor of marketing at SFSU, laughed at the idea due to capital costs. But he referred me to Dr. Silverman, professor of sustainable business at SFSU.
At our first meeting, we agreed that a business plan was not feasible. As a prolific case study author, Dr. Silverman helped develop the second idea for this project with a new outline. Over the next year, the writing evolved from business plan into case study targeted at business strategy textbooks. Isolated in Los Angeles, I wrote and wrote and wrote. Little did I know, case studies weren’t supposed to dive as deep as I did?
In 2004, linking oil, the environment and hybrid consumers sounded feasible, but too much changed in 2005. Detroit hit a brick wall and I moved back to San Francisco and divorced my car and truck. I found new relevant information almost daily, and couldn’t quite decide on when and where to end the project. Another deadline came and went, so I put the project on the shelf for a few months.
I came back to the project in late 2006. The political and business climate had changed. The talk had gone from hydrogen economy to corn and then to plug-in hybrids. I had read thousands of pages of material and rewrote many drafts because of so much changing information. The project had gone beyond the scope of a case study.
At the same time, I had to replace my advisor because he was on a one year sabbatical. I called some professors that were also hybrid drivers. Dr. Carr-Ruffino, author and management professor at SFSU, offered to take over the project right away. With three months to go, we quickly agreed to restructure the huge amount of material into a report about the hybrid phenomenon. Her idea that the culminating experience could become a book changed everything. I started thinking about hybrid stories and weaved some into the chapters that Dr. Silverman outlined a year earlier. The research report was reborn for the third and last time as The Hybrid Phenomenon.
Over the last three months, the project really took off. It was so rewarding to add real life quotes to the data I had collected. With a fresh set of interview questions for hybrid owners, I walked the streets of San Francisco. I’ve been lucky enough on some days to be able to see 20 hybrids and drivers. I must have seen thousands of bumper stickers, license plate frames, colors, types of cars and drivers. During a year of living without a car, I watched the hybrid go from alternative to mainstream.
I’ve also driven several Ford, Toyota and Honda hybrids through family, friends, rentals and events. I’ve read as much as I could about hybrids. I’ve attended green car events (see Appendix A) and talked to dozens of people about hybrids.
I’ve always been fascinated with cars. As a young five-year-old in the 60s, I rode the streets of San Francisco on my own hybrid: a plastic big wheel retrofitted with a solid steel tricycle front wheel. My father had engineered the fastest big wheel around, and by junior high, I graduated to mini-bikes, go-karts and dirt bikes.
In high school, my first job was pumping gas at the closest station to Sears Point, now known as Infineon Raceway. I still remember drag nights and helping kids fill up their muscle cars on leaded premium. While I tinkered on my first car, I never thought that I would have the chance to drive over 50 different models over the next 20 years. In the 80’s gas was cheap and low mileage muscle cars were cool. It was an innocent time before energy, the environment and transportation became major global issues. Horsepower and the open road drove the guilt free American car dream.
Things have changed. Writing this project has given me new hopes for the future. My business hope is that engineers, marketers, accountants and managers work more closely together to develop ideas that can help consumers make greener choices. My strategic hope is that CEOs will grow confident in greener strategies and sustainable business practices. My personal hope is to land a job related to this research and publish.


The research included the following ten interviews. Two different sets of questions were asked to professionals and hybrid owners. Four professionals were interviewed from different industries to give a rounded view. The second set of interviews with six hybrid owners took place in late 2006.

List of Interviews:
B1. Professionals Interview Template
B2. Management Consultant (Booz Allen Hamilton)
B3. Sales Consultant (San Francisco Honda)
B4. Research Engineer (Chevron)
B5. General Manager (Yellow Cab Cooperative of San Francisco)
B6. Consumers Interview Template
B7. David Simoni (Civic owner)
B8. James Acheson (Insight owner)
B9. Dr. Sanjit Sengupta (Prius owner)
B10. L.L. (Prius owner)
B11. Susan (Lexus SUV owner)
B12. Dr. Norma Carr-Ruffino (Prius owner)

The interviews were conducted via email, telephone and in person. The names of the participants remained confidential or disclosed with permission. The relevant content was weaved into the text as “oral history” and cited as “interview with author.”


San Francisco State University
John Acheson

895: Interview Questions

1. Where are you from?
2. What is your profession?
3. Do you own a hybrid electric vehicle?
4. Can you give your definition of a hybrid electric vehicle?
5. What do you think about hybrids?
6. What do you think is motivating consumers to buy hybrids?
7. What do you think are some unmet needs of hybrid consumers?
8. What do you think is causing the shortage of hybrids?
9. What companies do you think will lead hybrid manufacturing?
10. What strategic moves would you make to lead hybrid manufacturing?
11. What do you think are the key factors for success in making hybrids?
12. How do you think making hybrids can achieve above average profits?
13. Could you name some companies that have strong hybrid producing strategies?
14. What are some strengths and weaknesses among the companies you mentioned?
15. How do you feel about those companies’ prices and costs?
16. What strategic issues do those companies face?
17. How do you think the hybrid niche will evolve?
18. How do you think hybrids will affect the global automobile industry?
19. What do you think about the technology required to make hybrids?
20. What technologies do you think will come from hybrids?
21. What do you think would be the most competitive hybrid strategy?
22. How do you think automakers can lower the costs of making hybrids?
23. How do you think automakers can increase hybrid quality and performance?
24. What do you think are some issues that the automobile industry is facing?


San Francisco State University
Master of Business Administration
John Acheson
1471 Jackson St Apt 4
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 290-7767


The author, John Acheson, will interview five to ten “content experts” to “report oral history”[186] in a research project titled “The Hybrid Phenomenon.” Paraphrasing or direct quotes will appear in the body of the text with footnotes. The outcome of this project will be a research report to be filed in the graduate office of San Francisco State University’s College of Business.

1. What do you do for a living?
2. Why do you think hybrids have become so popular?
3. Could you tell your story about why you decided to buy a hybrid?
4. How did the supply and demand of oil affect your decision?
5. How did environmental considerations such as emissions, smog and air pollution affect your decision?
6. How did political tensions over oil, war and the Middle East affect your decision?
7. How did education, knowledge and intelligence about hybrids affect your decision?
8. How did the influence of popular culture affect your decision?
9. How did the price of gas affect your decision?
10. Did other costs and benefits such as taxes, parking and tolls matter?
11. How did the different hybrid technologies affect your decision?
12. How did the strengths and weaknesses of the different car companies affect your decision?

The following closing questions will be asked on a voluntary basis:

• How would you like your identity to be acknowledged (i.e. name, occupation, “consumer,” “hybrid driver,” anonymous etc.) in the report?
• Would like to a final copy of the report? (If so, please provide an email address that can accept a large PDF electronic document.)

[186] Mary Richards, SFSU IRB Human Subjects Protection Office, key phrases “content experts,” “reporting” and “oral history” provided and approved as protocols that DO NOT involve Human Subjects, via phone conversation on October 17, 2006.


An, Feng and Sauer, Amanda. “Comparison of Passenger Vehicle Fuel Economy and Greenhouse Gas Emission Standards around the World,” PEW Center on Global Climate Change Paper,, accessed November 2006.

Christensen, Clayton M. The Innovator’s Dilemma, Boston, MA: HarperCollins, 1997, 2000.

Cogan, Ron, Green Car Journal. San Luis Obispo, CA: Green Car Journal, 2006.

Ford, 2001-2006 Annual Reports. Detroit: Ford Motor Company, 2001-2006.

GM, 2001-2006 Annual Reports. Detroit: General Motors Corporation, 2001-2006,, accessed 2002-2006.

Greenlight Initiative, AAA Greenlight Initiative Hybrid Driver Training Seminar booklet. San Francisco, CA: CSAA, November 2006.

Hawken, Amory Lovins, and L. H. Lovins. Natural Capitalism, Boston, New York, London: Little Brown and Company, 1999.

Heffner, Reid, Kenneth Kurani, and Thomas Turrentine, “Effects of Vehicle Image in Hybrid Electric Vehicles,” Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California Davis,, accessed 2005 and 2006.

Honda, 2001-2006 Annual Reports. Tokyo: Honda Motor Co., Ltd., 2001-2006,, accessed 2002-2006.

Kittell, Matt. ““Communities with Hybrids Chart,” New American Dream,, accessed November 2006.

Kreith, Frank, and R.E. West, “Gauging Efficiency, Well to Wheel,” Transportation Quarterly, Vol.56, No. 1 (Winter 2002): 51-73.

Lovins, Amory. “Technology Integration for Radical and Profitable Transport Efficiency,” Keynote Address presented at Advanced Transportation Workshop under the Global Climate & Energy Project, Stanford University, Stanford, CA,, accessed November 2006.

Magee, David. Ford Tough, Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, 2005.

Moore, Geoffrey A. Crossing the Chasm, New York, NY: HarperCollins, 1991, 1999, 2002.

Motavalli, Jim. Forward Drive. San Francisco: Sierra Club Books, 2000, 2001.

Porter, Michael, E. Competitive Strategy, New York, NY: The Free Press, 1980, 1998.

Raskin, Amy and Saurin Shah, “The Emergence of Hybrid Vehicles,” AllianceBernstein White Paper,, accessed November 2006.

Sperling, Daniel. Future Drive. Washington, DC: Island Press, 1995.

Survey of Oregon Hybrid Gas-Electric Car Owners, Portland, OR: Oregon Environmental Council, July 2003.

Sullivan, Paul, Ph.D., Andy Tan, Ahmed Shebe, Dai Wakahoi, Kazumaza Hirasawa, and George Luna, “The Creed Project: 1003 Toyota Prius Ethanol - Hybrid,” technical paper, Automotive Engineering Technology, Minnesota State University, April 14, 2004,, accessed November 18, 2006.

Toyota, 2001-2006 Annual Reports. Toyota City: Toyota Motor Corporation, 2001-2006,, accessed 2002-2006.

Traister, Robert. All About Electric & Hybrid Cars. Blue Ridge Summit, PA: TAB Books, 1982.

Turrentine, Thomas, Mark Delucchi, Rusty Heffner, Kenneth Kurani, and Yongling Sun, “Quantifying the Benefits of Hybrid Vehicles,” Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California Davis,, accessed November 21, 2006.

Wang, Michael. “Well-to-Wheels Results of Advanced Vehicle Systems with New Transportation Fuels,” Keynote Address presented at Keynote Address presented at Advanced Transportation Workshop under the Global Climate & Energy Project,, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, accessed November 2006.

The Hybrid Phenomenon TITLE


A research project submitted to the faculty of
San Francisco State University
in partial fulfillment of
the requirements for
the degree

Master of Business Administration

John Edward Acheson
San Francisco, California
December 12, 2006

The Hybrid Phenomenon HYBRID HISTORY 101


At the turn of the last century, Dr. Ferdinand Porsche, a young engineer at the time, was asked to build a new kind of horseless carriage. During a time when electric grids were few and far between, oil was cheap, and the environment lush with natural resources, Porsche’s boss Jacob Lohner, asked his employee to design a better electric car.
Lohner-Porsche had successfully offered a hybrid alternative as early as the late 1890’s. The hybrid solved the limited speed and range of popular electrics. Although electric cars were more efficient, their world’s first hybrid was twice as efficient as the Prius and four times more efficient as conventional cars. Modern internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles have put out enough horsepower to help warm
the Earth, but have only improved efficiency an estimated 1/10 of a percent per year.

The Lohner-Porsche was a runaway success. It won several races and the carriage maker produced 300 units by hand. It still filled up on gasoline, but electric motors turned the wheels. Compared to a background of a horse pulling a carriage, most vehicles were based on linear horsepower. Energy or food fed the horse or engine which in turn converted movement into propulsion. It was a one-way street! Most of the energy was lost through heat. Grills, body designs, tires, wheels, engine and transmission oils, pumps, brakes, radiators, fans, sensors and many parts were focused on this task. Unfortunately, the cheaper and easier fix for lost efficiency was to eat more energy: engines got bigger, cars went faster and trucks drove trade. We spent the last century focused on only one way to make the horse better: add more horses.

By 1920, the hybrid was run off the road by more powerful gasoline automobiles. The hybrid attempted to help cars but moved on to heavier vehicles after the ICE established itself. With limited success against power and range, the hybrid moved upstream into industrial uses. From Porsche’s 1899 hybrid through the 1940’s several auto companies tried to produce them including Lohner, GE, Siemens, Paris Electric and Woods. It took several decades before the hybrid returned to American showrooms to change the way we think about energy and transportation.

In the meantime, the hybrid was busy bolstering the United States’ rise to global superpower. It invaded heavy equipment and larger vehicles. It also helped World War II efforts, the industrial revolution and the development of the world’s infrastructures.

Hybrid locomotives built America and powered the industrial age. Hybrid ships and submarines won battles; a hybrid submarine sunk the hybrid ship after it delivered the atomic bomb that ended WWII. Hybrid heavy equipment mined our natural resources that powered manufacturing. Hydraulic hybrids invaded vehicles of all kinds including the trucks and tractors that built our roads. Hybrid electric grids flattened the world and powered civilization. Hybrid elevators ran our buildings and hybrid appliances like dryers and stoves served American homes. Hybrid vehicles finally returned to the auto business and went into mass production by 2000.

At the turn of the millennium, the hybrid moved out of the industrial age and into the information age. After almost 100 years confined to industrial uses, it went mainstream fast. Utilizing off-the-shelf technologies, it sustained an industry in crisis. More efficient power management and the ability to recycle energy increased efficiency. From inputs of oil and gasoline, through consumer use and behavior, to outputs that affected the economy and environment, hybrids became the most visible transportation product that reduced oil consumption.

Combining gasoline and electricity helped the hybrid get the job done. More efficiency reduced its ecological footprint. The hybrid marked a tipping point in the global auto industry. After 100 years of growth powered by fossil fuels and abundant natural resources, the car business moved towards efficiency and away from horsepower. Responding to environmental challenges, automakers developed cleaner technologies and responded to changing consumer behaviors.

The Hybrid Phenomenon INTRODUCTION


“The contemporary automobile, after a century of engineering, is embarrassingly inefficient: Of the energy in the fuel it consumers, at least 80 percent is lost, mainly in the engine’s heat and exhaust, so that only 20 percent is actually used to turn the wheels. Of the resulting force, 95 percent moves the car, while only 5 percent moves the driver, in proportion to their respective weights. Five percent of 20 percent is one percent – not a gratifying result from American cars that burn their own weight in gasoline every year.”

Led by the most efficient car ever mass-produced, hybrids disrupted the “largest industry in the world, automotive transportation.” Toyota’s Prius recycled energy and soon became an American icon. The leap forward in efficiency reduced oil demand and left a smaller environmental footprint.

From 2000 to 2005, global Prius sales grew over 820%; U.S. hybrid sales jumped 2,100%. Compared to the modern car at 20-25% efficiency, the Prius provided 37%. The phenomenal little car changed everything. By 2007, over 800,000 consumers fell in love with hybrids and fueled over $15 billion in global sales.

This report studied the hybrid from the perspective of what influenced “The Hybrid Phenomenon.” The search led to questions about oil and fuels, government, the environment, popular culture, the auto industry, hybrid buyers, and technology.

For over two years, I researched the hybrid phenomenon. In a changing environment, the hybrid evolved from a funny looking little car into mainstream technology. At first, gas prices and the environment were the biggest issues. Then came oil and government. Pop culture followed to help the hybrid “cross the chasm.” But it threatened domestic gasoline, so alternative fuels received a huge push. Once the technology successfully established reliability, the hybrid entered the mainstream.

During the research, the most surprising reaction I experienced was at SFSU’s 2006 Graduate Research Showcase of over 140 culminating experiences. The first car on my painted road titled, “Hybrid History 101” attracted the most attention. Most ignored the hybrid savings analysis, celebrities and the growing number of new models. All ages from kids to drivers to masters and PhDs stopped and stared at a picture of the world’s first hybrid (see Figure 1). They were dumbfounded to learn that the hybrid was designed over a century ago by automobile industry genius, Ferdinand Porsche.

Figure 1: World's First Hybrid

Source: Tom Whitney, “Hybrids and Hybrid History,” CanadianDriver, Canadian Driver Communication’s Inc. Web site, February 24, 2005,, accessed July 10, 2006.

The first hybrid cars came out of a need to add acceleration to electric cars. Around 1897, Porsche probably filed the world’s first hybrid patent. He designed the first front wheel drive, eliminated several moving parts including the transmission, added a petrol engine, to successfully build the world’s first hybrid car. His phenomenal design exhibited 83% efficiency. Most of the billion modern cars and trucks mass-produced until the Prius, only achieved about 10-20% efficiency. Some modern diesel-electric hybrids, electrics and hydrogen-electric hybrids improved to 45%, but had yet to be mass-produced as cars.

In 1900, American car makers produced only about 4,200 cars. Most were steamers and electrics, not gasoline. In the early years, Porsche built and drove his hybrids and won several races. He even set world records for speed. The exposure fueled the early success of the hybrid and jumpstarted Porsche’s legacy. His boss, coach maker Lohner, seized an opportunity that many start-ups have taken; he sold the hybrid patents to Austro-Daimler. During the transaction, Daimler’s head salesman and father of a young girl named Mercedes, convinced Porsche to come aboard. The hybrid enabled Porsche’s first career move on a list of several historical automaking accomplishments including the world’s best selling Volkswagen and Porsche ventures.

General Electric also developed an early hybrid prototype but it never made it into the showroom. A French company built an alcohol-electric hybrid concept in 1903 and followed with an unsuccessful commercial gasoline-hybrid version the following year. In 1905, an American engineer filed the first U.S. hybrid patent, but failed to commercialize it. In about 1912, a Chicago electric carmaker released a fairly luxurious and successful hybrid that sold 600 units. That would be America’s best-selling hybrid until Ford released the first hybrid SUV (see Ford’s Escape) to join the hybrid phenomenon.

Paul Hawken, Amory Lovins and L. H. Lovins, Natural Capitalism (Boston, New York, London: Little Brown and Company, 1999), p. 24.
Ibid., p. 22.
Geoffrey Moore, Crossing the Chasm (New York, NY: HarperBusiness, 2002).


Appendix C is dedicated to a comprehensive list of hybrids I compiled from 2004 through 2006. Table 7 alphabetizes hybrid cars and trucks by chronological make and model. Some makes are brands, nameplates or wholly owned subsidiaries of parent companies denoted in parenthesis. The list includes modern cars and trucks as well as concept, demonstration, experimental, research, prototypes and race cars. The model “Historical” recognizes some hybrids lost in history. I did not include industrial hybrids such as buses, heavy trucks, trains, ships, etc.
Products available for sale or confirmed for future release are listed by model year (generally one year after the calendar year of release). Concepts are arranged by debut year at an auto show. Others were listed as reported. All were U.S. models unless noted by country or region in parenthesis. For example, (Europe) or (Japan).
“Hybrid” means gasoline-electric unless noted otherwise. Fuel Cell Vehicles are also considered hybrids and are designated by “FCV” or Hydrogen Hybrid. Unique technical specifications are occasionally included in parenthesis after make and model. For example, miles per gallon (MPG) figures were listed for the Accelerated Composites Aptera and next generation 2009 Prius.
Table 7: Hybrid Cars and Light Trucks
• Accelerated Composites: Aptera Diesel-Electric Three-Wheel Parallel Hybrid Concept (330 MPG)
• Acura (Honda): 2002 Acura DN-X Hybrid AWD Sportscar Concept
• Audi (Volkswagen): 1989 Duo Hybrid Experimental Car, 1991 Audi 100 Avant Quatro Hybrid Experimental Car, 1997 A4 Duo Diesel-Electric Hybrid Experimental Car (Europe), 2004 A2 Hydrogen Hybrid Concept, 2005 Q7 Quattro Hybrid SUV Concept, 2008 Q7 Quattro Hybrid SUV
• BMW: 2000 745h Gasoline-Electric FCV Concept, 2005 X3 Concept SUV, 2008 X5 Hybrid Concept SUV, 2008 Hybrid 7 Series
• Cadillac (GM): 2008 Escalade Hybrid SUV (Panasonic battery pack)
• Cherry Automobile: 2007 Cherry Hybrid (China)
• Chevrolet (GM): 2001 S-10 Gasoline-Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Pickup, 2005 Silverado Hybrid Truck (AC outlets), 2007 Volt Plug-In Hybrid, 2008 Equinox Hybrid SUV, 2008 Malibu Hybrid, 2008 Tahoe Hybrid SUV
• Geely (China): 2008 Geely Maple Hybrid
• GM: 1969 GM 512 Hybrid Experimental Vehicle, 1997 Sintra FCV Mini Van Concept, 1998-2002 HydroGen/Zafria FCV Mini Van Concept, 2000 Precept FCV Concept, 2002 Autonomy FCV Concept,, 2002 Hy-Wire FCV Concept, 2005 Sequel Hybrid FC Concept, 2005 GMC Sierra Hybrid Truck, 2008 GMC Yukon Hybrid SUV, HydroGen3 Hybrid FCV Concept
• Daihatsu (Toyota): 1999 EV-FC Methanol-Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Micro Van, 2001 MOVE FCV-K-II Hybrid FC Mini-car Concept, 2001 Atrai Hybrid Minivan, 2002-2006 HiJet Cargo Hybrid Van Concept, 2004 UFE2 Hybrid Concept, UFE-III Hybrid Concept Research Vehicle (173MPG), HVS Hybrid Roadster Concept (80MPG)
• Daimler Chrysler: 1982 Boxer Hybrid, 1994-2001 NECAR Methanol and/or Hydrogen Hybrid FC Prototypes, 2000 Jeep Commander 2 Methanol-Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC SUV, 2001 Natrium Town & Country Hydride-Hydrogen-Electric FC Mini Van, 2002 F-Cell A-Class Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Prototype, 2003 Jeep Treo FCV Concept, 2003 F500 Mind Hybrid Concept, Chrysler Aspen Hybrid Concept SUV
• Dodge (Daimler Chrysler): 1997 Dodge Intrepid ESX Hybrid Concept Car, 1998 Dodge Diesel-Electric Hybrid Concept Car, 2001 Dodge CNG Hybrid Concept SUV, 2004 Dodge Ram Hybrid Truck, Dodge Caravan FCV Hybrid Concept Van, 2008 Dodge Durango Hybrid SUV
• Esoro (Switzerland): 2001 Hycar Hydrogen Hybrid FC Prototype
• Fiat: 2000 Multipla Hybrid Prototype, Panda Hydrogen FC Prototype, 2001 Seicento Elletra H2 Hydrogen Hybrid FCV Prototype, 2003 Seicento Hydrogen Hybrid FCV Prototype
• Ford: 1999 Ford P2000 HFC Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid Ballard FC Prototype, 1999 Ford Prodigy Hybrid Family Car Prototype, 2000-2002 Ford Focus Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Prototype, 2000 Ford Think FC5 Methanol-Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Demonstration Prototype, 2003 Ford Futura Hybrid Concept, 2003 Ford Glocar FCV, 2005 Ford Escape Gasoline-Electric (AC outlets), 2006 E-85-Electric Hybrid SUV (AC outlets), 2007 Airstream Hydrogen-Electric Plug-In Hybrid, 2009 Ford Fusion Hybrid Midsize, Ford Edge Hybrid, Ford Fiesta Micro Hybrid Concept, Ford-Five Hundred Hybrid Concept, Ford Focus FC5 Methanol FCV-Hybrid Concept, 2006 Ford Reflex Diesel Solar Electric Hybrid Concept (65MPG)
• Historical: 1900 Pieper, 1903 Krieger, 1906-1912 Auto Mixte, 1907 L'Energie Electro-Mécanique AL Hybrid (France), 1914 Couple Gear Aerial Ladder Truck, 1920 Owen Magnetic Model 60 Touring Hybrid, 1914 Woods Dual Power Hybrid, 1916 Baker, 1979 Mother Earth, 1980 Briggs and Stratton Hybrid
• Honda: 1997 J-VX Hybrid Concept, 1999 VV Hybrid Concept, 1999-2006 Insight Hybrid, 2001 Dual-Note Hybrid Concept Sportscar, 1999-2001 FCX-V1-4 Methanol then Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Prototypes, 2002-2006 FCX FCV Concept, 2003 Kiwami FCV Concept, 2003-2005 Civic I Hybrid Compact, 2005 Accord Hybrid Sedan, 2006 Civic II Hybrid Compact, 2007 CR-V Hybrid CUV, 2008 Fit Hybrid, Honda Pilot Hybrid SUV, Honda Ridgeline Hybrid Truck
• Hyundai: 1995 FGV-1 Concept Hybrid, 2000-2001 Santa Fe FCV Concept SUVs, FGV-2/Verna/Avante Hybrid Concept, 2004 Click Hybrid, 2004 Tucson FCV Concept, 2005 Hyundai Accent Hybrid Concept, 2005 Portico Hybrid Concept
• Isuzu: 2004 Elf Diesel Hybrid Light Duty Truck
• Kia: 2004 Sportage FCV Concept, 2006 Kia Rio Hybrid Concept
• Lexus (Toyota): 2003 Lexus RX 330 Hybrid Concept SUV, 2005 Lexus 450h Hybrid Racecar, 2006 Lexus RX 400h Hybrid SUV, 2007 Lexus GS 450h, 2008 Lexus LS 600h Hybrid Luxury Sedan, 2009 Lexus LF-Sh V-8 4WD Hybrid
• Lincoln (Ford): Lincoln MKX Hybrid SUV
• Loremo: Loremo LS (165 MPG) & GT (92 MPG) Hybrid Concepts
• Mahindra & Mahindra (India): 2008/2009 Mahindra Scorpio Diesel-Electric Hybrid SUV Concept, Hy-Alpha Hydrogen Hybrid Concept
• Mazda (Ford): 1997 Demio FCV Concept Car, 2001 Premacy Methanol FCV Concept, 2002 Demio Hybrid Van, 2003 Ibuki Hybrid Roadster Concept, 2007 Tribute Hybrid SUV, Premacy RE Hydrogen Electric Concept Mini Van, Senku Rotary Hybrid Concept
• Mercury (Ford): 2006 Mariner Hybrid SUV, Montego Hybrid, 2009 Milan Hybrid Midsize
• Mercedes (Daimler Chrysler): 1999 Mercedes S-Class Hybrid Concept, 2004 Mercedes Vision GST Diesel-Electric Hybrid Concept, 2005 S400 Hybrid Concept, 2005 Smart Diesel-Electric and Gasoline-Electric Hybrid Concepts, 2007 Mercedes Blutec E320 Diesel Electric Hybrid, 2009 Mercedes S-Class Hybrid, Mercedes Blutec GL and SL Diesel Electric Hybrids, Mercedes A-Class Hybrid Concept
• Mitsubishi: 2001 Spaceliner Methanol FCV Concept, 2003 Gradis FCV Concept Mini Van, 2004 Concept-E Hybrid Concept, Sportscar, 2006 Concept-CT MiEV Prototype, FCV Hydrogen Hybrid Van Concept
• N Technology/Tattus (Renault): 2007 NT207 Hybrid Racecar
• Opel (GM): 1997 EV1 FCEV Methanol-Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid Prototype, 1997 Sintra FCV Hybrid Mini Van Prototype, 2006 Astra Diesel Electric Hybrid Concept
• Nissan (Renault): 1999 R’nessa Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Concept SUV, 2000-2001 Xterra Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Concept, 2002 X-TRAIL Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Concept SUV, 2003 Effis Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Concept Commuter Car, 2007 Nissan Altima Hybrid Passenger Car
• Panoz: 1998 Panoz Q9 GT Ford Gasoline Zytec Electric Hybrid LeMans Racecar
• PATAC (GM/Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp. Group): 2001 Phoenix FCV Concept
• Porsche: 1898-1905 Lohner Porsche Hybrids, 2005 Cayenne Hybrid Concept SUV, Porsche Panamera Hybrid Concept
• PSA Peugeot Citroen: 2001 Hydro-Gen Hybrid FCV Concept, 2007 307 HDi Hybrid, 2006 Peugeot 307 CC Hybrid Diesel Hybrid and Citroen C4 Hdi Diesel Electric Hybrid Demonstration Concepts, 2006 Paris Auto Show Peugeot C-Metisse Diesel Hybrid, Peugeot 207 Epure FCV Hybrid Concept
• Renault: 1997 Laguna Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Concept Wagon, 2003 Kangoo Hybrid Van Concept
• Shanghai Maple Automobile (Geely): 2008 Hybrid Concepts
• Saab (GM): 2006 SAAB BioPower Ethanol-Electric Hybrid Concept Convertible, 2010 SAAB E-85 Hybrid Turbo Passenger Car
• Saturn (GM): 2007 Saturn VUE Green Line Hybrid SUV, 2007 Saturn Aura Greenline Hybrid Sedan, 2008 Saturn VUE Green Line Two-Mode Hybrid SUV, Saturn VUE Green Line Plug-In Hybrid SUV
• Subaru: 2003 Subaru B9 Scrambler Hybrid Concept Roadster, 2005 Subaru B5-TPH Turbo Parallel Hybrid AWD Concept Wagon
• Suzuki: 2001 Covie FCV Concept, 2003 Mobile Terrace FCV Concept, 2003-2005 Twin Hybrid, Landbreeze Hybrid SUV Concept, Ionis FCV Hybrid Concept Van, 2010-2012 Hybrid
• Tokyo R&D: Vemac RD408H V-8 150KW Hybrid Racecar
• Toyota: 1977 Toyota Sports 800 Gas Turbine (GT) Hybrid Prototype, 1996-1997 RAV-4 FCEV Hydrogen-Electric Hybrid FC Concept, 1997-2000 First Generation Prius (Japan), 2000-2003 Second Generation Prius or Prius Classic Hybrid Compact (Japan/Europe/U.S.), 2001 Estima Hybrid Minivan, 2001 Crown Hybrid Sedan, 2001-2002 Kluger FCHV 3-5 Hydrogen-Electric FC Hybrid Concept, 2003 Alphard (Japan, AC outlets) Hybrid Minivan, 2003 FINE-S FCV Concept, 2004-2008 Third Generation Prius, New Prius or Prius II Compact (Global), 2004 FTX Hybrid Truck Concept, Highlander FCV Concept SUV, 2003 SU-HV1 Hybrid SUV Concept, 2004 Volta Hybrid Sportscar Concept, 2004 Harrier Hybrid (Japan) SUV, 2004 Highlander (U.S.A.) Kluger (Australia/Japan) Hybrid SUV, 2006 Vitz CVT Light Hybrid (First Lithium-ion), 2007 Camry Hybrid, 2007 FT-SH Concept Sportscar, 2008 Tundra Hybrid Truck, 2009 Fourth Generation Prius (Lithium-Ion, 94 MPG), Sienna Hybrid Minivan Concept, Crown Concept, CS&S Hybrid Concept, Vitz Hybrid Sub-Compact, Prius Sub-Compact Hybrid Concept, Prius CUV Hybrid Concept, Prius Wagon Hybrid Concept, Prius Plug-In Hybrid Concept
• Quantum: 2004 H2 Hydrogen Electric Hybrid Prius Research Vehicle
• Venturi: 2009 Astrolab Solar-Electric Hybrid
• Volkswagen: Golf ECO.Power Diesel-Electric Hybrid, 2008 Touran Hybrid Minivan (China), Bora Hydrogen Hybrid Concept, Jetta Hybrid, HY.MOTION FCV Concept
Sources: Toyota,, accessed October 28, 2004 and November 3, 2006; Hybrids, Wikipedia, “List of Hybrid Vehicles,”, Wikimedia Foundation Web site, accessed 2004 – 2006; Union of Concerned Scientists, “Hybrid Vehicle Timeline,” Web site,, accessed May 16, 2006, October 20, 2006 and November 3, 2006;, “History of Hybrid Vehicles,”, accessed 2006; “Fuel Cell Vehicles,”, accessed December 1, 2006; Ward’s Automotive Reports and Various Organization Web sites including Audi, CNET, Motor Trend, MSN Autos, MSNBC Green Machines and Auto Show Web sites.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Strategy or Tactic

Raw Response to Geoffrey Moore
Coins in the Couch

I disagree that squeezing costs out of the value chain is a strategy... This is the destiny of all organizations, you might call it evolution, it's nothing new. I would argue that finding coins in the couch is a tactic, most commonly know as kaizen. Incremental improvement is not a strategy, it's reality. I feel that tactics are part of a larger strategy that one might pursue, such as becoming the low-cost leader. But, that's a tough strategy that allows only one player per industry and if one thinks that finding coins in the couch is a tactic that will lead towards that strategy, that leader may end up like K-Mart. The 2nd cheapest and bankrupt.

On the other hand, if one incorporates finding coins in the couch with a differentiation strategy, this leader should be able to keep up with or beat the competition. The reason being that lowering certain productivity improvements can fund quality and not lower costs.

Be very clear on your strategy and make sure your tactics are aligned. Finding coins in the couch is a tactic, not a strategy.

Posted by: John Acheson | September 24, 2006 at 12:36 PM

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