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Purpose and Innovation

All figures are adjusted for inflation. For more information on the sources used to determine these figures, please see pg. 135 of Purpose for the original table (9.1).


  1. Schumpeter, “The Creative Response in Economic History,” in Richard Clemence (ed.), Essays on Entrepreneurs, Innovations, Business Cycles and the Evolution of Capitalism (1951).
  2. Tony Eccles, Succeeding with Change: Implementing Action-Driven Strategies (1994).
  3. Michael Porter and Scott Stern, “National Innovative Capacity,” in The World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Report (2002).
  4. Barry Jaruzelski, Kevin Dehoff and Rakesh Bordia, “Money Isn’t Everything,” strategy+business (Winter 2005).
  5. Akio Morita, quoted in James Collins and Jerry Porras, Built to Last (1994).
  6. Daniel Vasella, “Make It Meaningful,” Harvard Business Review (August 2002).
  7. The limits to competition in established markets can become particularly rigid where there is a complex or long value chain: New entrants have to grapple with well-established patterns of supply and distribution, while existing players can become quite comfortable with relationships that were probably fashioned around their strengths. As we saw, Walton as well as Ford had to struggle with this. This, of course, is why the Internet was so liberating in industries as diverse as travel, personal computers and personal finance.
  8. Masaru Ibuka, quoted in Collins and Porras (1994).
  9. “When Boeing [non-executive] director Crawford Greenwalt asked a member of senior management about the projected return on investment of the proposed 747, the manager told him they had run some studies, but couldn’t recall the results. Greenwalt buried his head in his hands in response.” Collins and Porras (1994).

Author Profiles:

Nikos Mourkogiannis ([email protected]) is the chairman of the board of Panthea Ltd., a consulting firm based in London and a senior advisor on leadership to Booz Allen Hamilton. Formerly a senior executive with the Monitor Group, Westinghouse, and General Dynamics, he taught international negotiation at Harvard University. He is the author of Purpose: The Starting Point of Great Companies (Palgrave Macmillan, 2006), from which this article is adapted.
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PURPOSE: The Starting Point of Great Companies
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