To Succeed In Our Information Economy, Suggests Companies Let Down Their Boundaries and Surrender to Interdependence. In this Exclusive Excerpt From His Latest Book, He Tells Us How.
You could call it The Surrender Model. Or The Permeable Proposition. Or A Barrier-Free Guide to Success in the New Millennium.

Whatever you do, don't assume that X-Engineering the Corporation, released this month, is just a warmed-over version of James Champy's earlier work, the fabulously successful Reengineering the Corporation. That seminal business tome, co-written with another noted business strategist, Michael Hammer, inspired an entire generation of executives to put their companies on a low-cost diet, and the five-syllable word reengineering became synonymous with the simpler, but far more blunt term, layoffs.

Nine years later, Champy asserts that X-engineering is the next phase of a process that began with reengineering. Now, he says, managers need to look past the cold, process-driven reengineering for a warmer, fuzzier, but no less effective X-engineering. Managers can't look within for cost-cutting opportunities, he says. Gains will come in companies that reach out. That share. That don't keep secrets. That help their suppliers and partners succeed.

It may sound like a business version of All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten, but instead it's a recognition that today's corporations aren't self-contained, they're almost amorphous. Nowadays, CEOs are as dependent on their strategic alliances and their suppliers - not to mention customers - as they are on their management teams. And, Champy argues, communicating with all the "inside-outsiders" via the Internet is key to cutting costs and delivering quality to the customer.