IN MY OPINION: Institute of Management companion Charles Allen, executive chairman of Granada Media, explains the rules by which he plays, and wins, the business game

IN MY OPINION: Institute of Management companion Charles Allen, executive chairman of Granada Media, explains the rules by which he plays, and wins, the business game - A few years ago, no chief executive's office bookcase seemed complete without a well-t

by CHARLES ALLEN

A few years ago, no chief executive's office bookcase seemed complete without a well-thumbed copy of Chinese military historian Sun Tzu's The Art of War. Some businessmen saw themselves as generals waging a campaign against the competition, fighting on the beaches for market share. Business was war - kill or be killed, win/lose, no prisoners taken.

My management philosophy has always been slightly different. For me, business is less like war and more like a game. Like in any game, success in business presupposes four indispensable elements: objectives, rules, strategy and enthusiasm.

Defining success is probably the most important job for any leader. We've always sought to be transparent about the objectives we set ourselves at Granada, which have been constant since I joined the company. First comes the commitment to delivering quality service for all our customers.

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