Managing for Breakthroughs in Productivity

Barbados Group Working Paper No. 05-01

21 Pages Posted: 28 Jan 2005 Last revised: 10 Jun 2024

Date Written: January 1, 2005


This article is about creating and managing projects so as to deliberately and predictably produce results well beyond what could have been reasonably expected beforehand. This methodology was originated in the mid-1980's and applied to 20 engineering projects at IBM with spectacular results. In the years since, many projects in a myriad of fields have been managed using the same techniques with similar results. This article describes the original IBM projects and some of the additional projects undertaken since then. It also outlines the methodology used and provides perspective on why the methodology works and the pitfalls to be avoided.

Keywords: Performance, motivation, goals, commitment

Suggested Citation

Scherr, Allan L., Managing for Breakthroughs in Productivity (January 1, 2005). Barbados Group Working Paper No. 05-01, Available at SSRN: or

Allan L. Scherr (Contact Author)

ALS Consulting ( email )

14 Wyndclyffe Ct.
Rhinebeck, NY 12572
United States
845-876-0785 (Phone)


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