What do Merck, Linear Technology, Medtronic and Maytag have in common? According to the the new book, "The Three Rules: How Exceptional Companies Think," they are members of an elite group of companies that have achieved exceptional performance through a persistent adherence to three rules. In fact, of the 25,000 companies studied during a 45-year period, only 344, or just over 1%, met this test.
The three rules are beguilingly simple:
1. Better before cheaper.
2. Revenue before cost.
3. There are no other rules.
In an audio interview, Michael Raynor, a director at Deloitte Services and the coauthor of The Three Rules, describes why he and Mumtaz Ahmed wrote the book, the extensive research that went into it and how the three rules can serve as an operational "compass" for companies that want to create a competitive edge and become truly exceptional.