1. Biography

Borned in India, Ram Charan is a renowned advisor among senior executives for his skills to solve the hardest business problems by giving down to earth and relevant solutions and taking into account the real world complexities of business. Thus he has worked at some of the most important companies of the world for more than thirty-five years.
His first knowledge of the business was when he worked in the family shoe shop. However, he studied engineering in India and then worked in Australia and Hawaii. Nevertheless, he followed his innate talent and earned MBA and doctorate degrees from Harvard Business School, where he later worked.
He has won several awards for his teaching style and written numerous articles and books which have had wide diffusion, such as "Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done".
Nowadays, Dr. Charan is on the board of Austin Industries and Tyco Electronics and lives in Dallas, Texas.

2. Summary

In the sample page from his book "Leadership in the Era of Economic Uncertainty", Ram Charan uses DuPont CEO Chad Holliday as the perfect example of how managers must face the current crisis.
It was not after a meeting with one of his Japanese clients when Holliday became aware of the crisis great reach. He took immediate action and brought together the company’s six top leaders. They all agreed that credit was disappearing, both home and abroad, and that the crisis could be detected in different company’s sectors. Consequently, The Corporate Crisis plan was called up and “Corporate Crisis” was declared.
The plan brought together the 17 crisis time standing teams, though since the crisis was declared only financial, eight of them were not needed.
Then, it was time to communicate employees the ongoing situation. Within ten days every employee had had a meeting with a manager and was asked about three actions he or she could do to reduce costs and conserve cash. They were also polled to see if they had understood the crisis and what their psychological reaction was.
Several actions were taken, however, they were not as fast as they should have been. Therefore, Holliday had personal meetings with each of the company’s top 14 leaders who explained him all the measures they were taking, but still, they were not fast enough.
In addition to this, DuPont had a team of top executives working on longer-term actions. Nevertheless, the best way to safe cash was to move the non-profitable internal employees from their current jobs to do what used to be contract work.
All in all, DuPont’s reaction took place in less than six weeks.

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