4. Technology itself never makes or breaks a company.

One of the surprising findings in the study of good-to-great companies is that very few of them considered technology an important factor in company transformation. In over 80 interviews with upper management of the companies, only 1 in 5 mentioned technology as a top-five contributor to success. Even Nucor, a company lauded for its innovative use of technology, never mentioned technology itself as a key asset. It might be able to speed up progress, but it will never generate it.

There is a pervasive belief that keeping up with the latest tech developments is essential for a company’s survival, let alone success. The evidence collected and processed over the five-year study of good-to-great companies simply does not support that assumption. Technological change is never the main cause for a company’s downfall or its ongoing success.

What sets the good-to-great companies apart is not necessarily how they use technology but how they think about technology. The companies that rise to greatness figure out the best application for certain technologies that align with what they’re after. To be more specific, these companies use technology that creatively harnesses the intersection of passion, what they do best in the world, and the single factor that most effectively drives profit; and then creatively applies technology to make the most of it.

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