屋漏偏逢連夜雨。今天的Wall Street Journal頭版頭條題為Global Markets Shudder的報道說：
U.S. Stock investors, waking up to a turbulent European trading session, were further unnerved by an unexpected rise in the latest report on intial claims for jobless benefits. Ahead of a key January employment report due out Friday, the claims numbers revived on-again, off-again concerns about the strength of the U.S. economic recovery. The resulting selloff took the Dow below the psychologically important 10000 level in the final moments of trading.
金價亦同時大跌 ，C1版Dow Sinks to 3-Month Low Near 10000說：
James Steel, who follows the metals markets at HSBS Securities, said: "Historically a rise in sovereign risk is supportive of gold, but what appears to have happened is that risk aversion…went instead into U.S. Treasury and into the dollar."
儼然汽車界「一哥」的Toyota爆發質量危機，C10的"For Toyota, Problems Are Accelerating"結尾給出了「上車」建議：
Until Toyota puts the brakes on any new problems, investors should climb aboard with caution — as those who bought stock early in the week, thinking situation was under control, have already learned.
猶記得去年12月份Toyota總裁Akio Toyoda對傳媒透露，他正在閱讀Jim Collins的書How the Mighty Fall, and Why Some Companies Never Give in. 該書遠遠不及作者的From Good to Great及Level Five Leadership暢銷，撇開此書的質量，其話題可能也為人忌諱。
Jim Collins調查了十幾個歷史上的「東方不敗」最終落敗的案例，總結出它們衰亡的五個階段(Five Stages of Decline):
Stage 1: Hubris Born of Success
- Success entitlement, arrogance: Success is viewed as "deserved," rather than fortuitous, fleeting, or even hard earned in the face of daunting odds; people begin to believe that success will continue almost no matter what the organization decides to do, or not to do.
- Neglect of a primary flywheel: Distracted by extraneous threats, adventures, and opportunities, leaders neglect a primary flywheel, failing to renew it with the same creative intensity that made it great in the first place.
- "What" replaces "why": The rhetoric of success replaces understanding and insight.
- Decline in learning orientation: leaders lose the inquisitiveness and learning orientation that mark those truly great individuals who, no matter how successful they become, maintain a learning curve as steep as when they first began their careers.
Stage 2: Undisciplined Pursuit of More
- Unsustainable quest for growth, confusing big with great.
- Undisciplined discontinuous leaps.
- Declining proportion of right people in key seats.
- Easy cash erodes cost discipline: the organization responds to increasing costs by increasing prices and revenues rather than increasing discipline.
- Bureaucracy subverts discipline: A system of bureaucratic rule subverts the ethic of freedom and responsibility that marks a culture of discipline; people increasingly think in terms of "jobs" rather than responsibilities.
- Problematic succession of power.
- Personal interests placed above organizational interests.
Stage 3: Denial of Risk and Peril
- Amplify the positive, discount the negative: There is a tendency to discount or explain away negative data rather than presume that something is wrong with the company; leaders highlight and amplify external praise and publicity.
- Big bets and bold goals and/or make big bets that aren’t based on accumulated experience, or worse, that fly in the face of the facts.
- Incurring huge downside risk based on ambiguous data.
- Erosion of healthy team dynamics: a marked decline in the quality and amount of dialogue and debate; there is a shift toward either consensus or dictatorial management rather than a process of argument and disagreement followed by unified commitment to execute decisions.
- Obsessive reorganizations.
- Those in power become more imperious and detached.
Stage 4: Grasping for Salvation
- A series of silver bullets: There is a tendency to make dramatic, big moves, such as a "game changing" acquisition or a discontinuous leap into a new strategy or an exciting innovation, in an attempt to quickly catalyze a breakthrough—and then to do it again and again, lurching about from program to program, goal to goal, strategy to strategy, in a pattern of chronic inconsistency.
- Grasping for a leader-as-savior: The board responds to the threats and setbacks by searching for a charismatic leader and/or outside savior.
- Panic and haste: instead of being calm, deliberate, and disciplined, people exhibit hasty, reactive behavior, bordering on panic.
- Radical change and "revolution" with fanfare: Leaders engage in hoopla, spending a lot of energy trying to align and "motivate" people, engaging in buzzwords and taglines.
- Hype precedes results: Instead of setting expectations low–underscoring the duration and difficulty of the turnaround—leaders hype their visions; they "sell the future" to compensate for the lack of current results, initiating a pattern of overpromising and underdelivering.
- Initial upswing followed by disappointments: There is an initial burst of positive results, but they do not last; dashed hope follows dashed hope; the organization achieves no buildup, no cumulative momentum.
- Confusion and cynicism: People cannot easily articulate what the organization stands for; core values have eroded to the point of irrelevance; the organization has become "just another place to work," a place to get a paycheck; people lose faith in their ability to triumph and prevail. Instead of passionately believing in the organization’s core values and purposes, people become distrustful, regarding visions and values as little more than PR and rhetoric.
- Chronic restructuring and erosion of financial strength: Each failed initiatives drains resources; cash flow and financial liquidity begin to decline; the organization undergoes multiple restructurings; options narrow and strategic decisions are increasingly dictated by circumstance.
Stage 5: Capitulation to Irrelevance or Death
據說Toyota已經進入Step 4, 即Grasping for Salvation階段。對照一下，Microsoft也挺像的。