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The Business Book

Book Description

The Business Book clearly and simply explains all of the key theories that have shaped the world of business, management, and commerce.

Using easy-to-follow graphics and artworks, succinct quotations, and thoroughly accessible text, The Business Book introduces the would-be entrepreneur and general reader alike to the work of great commercial thinkers, leaders, and gurus.

The Business Book includes:

- Almost 100 quotations from the great business thinkers and gurus

- Information on every facet of business management, including alternative business models, with real life examples from the marketplace

- A structure that takes the reader through every stage of business strategy, from start-up to delivering the goods

The clear and concise summaries, graphics, and quotations in The Business Book will help even the complete novice understand the key ideas behind business success.

Table of Contents

    1. If you can dream it, you can do it • Beating the odds at start-up
    2. There’s a gap in the market, but is there a market in the gap? • Finding a profitable niche
    3. You can learn all you need to know about the competition’s operation by looking in his garbage cans • Study the competition
    4. The secret of business is to know something that nobody else knows • Stand out in the market
    5. Be first or be better • Gaining an edge
    6. Put all your eggs in one basket, and then watch that basket • Managing risk
    7. Luck is a dividend of sweat. The more you sweat, the luckier you get • Luck (and how to get lucky)
    8. Broaden your vision, and maintain stability while advancing forward • Take the second step
    9. Nothing great is created suddenly • How fast to grow
    10. The role of the CEO is to enable people to excel • From entrepreneur to leader
    11. Chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken • Keep evolving business practice
    12. A corporation is a living organism; it has to continue to shed its skin • Reinventing and adapting
    13. Without continuous growth and progress, success has no meaning • The Greiner curve
    14. If you believe in something, work nights and weekends—it won’t feel like work • The weightless start-up
    1. Managers do things right, leaders do the right thing • Leading well
    2. None of us is as smart as all of us • The value of teams
    3. Innovation must be invasive and perpetual: everyone, everywhere, all of the time • Creativity and invention
    4. Dissent adds spice, spirit, and an invigorating quality • Beware the yes-men
    5. No great manager or leader ever fell from heaven • Gods of management
    6. A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way • Effective leadership
    7. Teamwork is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results • Organizing teams and talent
    8. Leaders allow great people to do the work they were born to do • Make the most of your talent
    9. The way forward may not be to go forward • Thinking outside the box
    10. The more a person can do, the more you can motivate them • Is money the motivator?
    11. Be an enzyme—a catalyst for change • Changing the game
    12. The worst disease that afflicts executives is egotism • Hubris and nemesis
    13. Culture is the way in which a group of people solves problems • Organizational culture
    14. Emotional intelligence is the intersection of heart and head • Develop emotional intelligence
    15. Management is a practice where art, science, and craft meet • Mintzberg’s management roles
    16. A camel is a horse designed by committee • Avoid groupthink
    17. The art of thinking independently, together • The value of diversity
    1. Do not let yourself be involved in a fraudulent business • Play by the rules
    2. Executive officers must be free from avarice • Profit before perks
    3. If wealth is placed where it bears interest, it comes back to you redoubled • Investment and dividends
    4. Borrow short, lend long • Making money from money
    5. The interests of the shareholders are our own • Accountability and governance
    6. Make the best quality of goods at the lowest cost, paying the highest wages possible • Your workers are your customers
    7. Utilize OPM—Other People’s Money • Who bears the risk?
    8. Swim upstream. Go the other way. Ignore the conventional wisdom • Ignoring the herd
    9. Debt is the worst poverty • Leverage and excess risk
    10. Cash is king • Profit versus cash flow
    11. Only when the tide goes out do you discover who’s been swimming naked • Off-balance-sheet risk
    12. Return on equity is a financial goal that can become an own goal • Maximize return on equity
    13. As the role of private equity has grown, so have the risks it poses • The private equity model
    14. Assign costs according to the resources consumed • Activity-based costing
    1. Turn every disaster into an opportunity • Learning from failure
    2. If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses • Leading the market
    3. The main thing to remember is, the main thing is the main thing • Protect the core business
    4. You don’t need a huge company, just a computer and a part-time person • Small is beautiful
    5. Don’t get caught in the middle • Porter’s generic strategies
    6. The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do • Good and bad strategy
    7. Synergy and other lies • Why takeovers disappoint
    8. The Chinese word “crisis” is composed of two characters: “danger” and “opportunity” • Crisis management
    9. You can’t grow long-term if you can’t eat short-term • Balancing long- versus short-termism
    10. Market Attractiveness, Business Attractiveness • The MABA matrix
    11. Only the paranoid survive • Avoiding complacency
    12. To excel, tap into people’s capacity to learn • The learning organization
    13. The future of business is selling less of more • The long tail
    14. To be an optimist … have a contingency plan for when all hell breaks loose • Contingency planning
    15. Plans are useless, but planning is indispensable • Scenario planning
    16. The strongest competitive forces determine the profitability of an industry • Porter’s five forces
    17. If you don’t have a competitive advantage, don’t compete • The value chain
    18. If you don’t know where you are, a map won’t help • The capability maturity model
    19. Chaos brings uneasiness, but it also allows for creativity and growth • Coping with chaos
    20. Always do what is right. It will gratify half of mankind and astonish the other • Morality in business
    21. There is no such thing as a minor lapse in integrity • Collusion
    22. Make it easier to do the right thing and much harder to do the wrong thing • Creating an ethical culture
    1. Marketing is far too important to leave to the marketing department • The marketing model
    2. Know the customer so well that the product fits them and sells itself • Understanding the market
    3. Attention, Interest, Desire, Action • The AIDA model
    4. Marketing myopia • Focus on the future market
    5. The cash cow is the beating heart of the organization • Product portfolio
    6. Expanding away from your core has risks; diversification doubles them • Ansoff’s matrix
    7. If you’re different, you will stand out • Creating a brand
    8. There is only one boss: the customer • Make your customers love you
    9. Whitewashing, but with a green brush • Greenwash
    10. People want companies to believe in something beyond maximizing profits • The appeal of ethics
    11. Everybody likes something extra for nothing • Promotions and incentives
    12. In good times people want to advertise; in bad times they have to • Why advertise?
    13. Make your thinking as funny as possible • Generating buzz
    14. E-commerce is becoming mobile commerce • M-commerce
    15. Trying to predict the future is like driving with no lights looking out of the back window • Forecasting
    16. Product, Place, Price, Promotion • Marketing mix
    1. See how much, not how little, you can give for a dollar • Maximize customer benefits
    2. Costs do not exist to be calculated. Costs exist to be reduced • Lean production
    3. If the pie’s not big enough, make a bigger pie • Fulfilling demand
    4. Eliminate unnecessary steps • Simplify processes
    5. Every gain through the elimination of waste is gold in the mine • Juran’s production ideal
    6. Machines, facilities, and people should work together to add value • Kaizen
    7. Learning and innovation go hand in hand • Applying and testing ideas
    8. Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning • Feedback and innovation
    9. Technology is the great growling engine of change • The right technology
    10. Without big data, you are blind and deaf and in the middle of a highway • Benefitting from “big data”
    11. Put the product into the customer’s hands—it will speak for itself • Quality sells
    12. The desire to own something a little better, a little sooner than necessary • Planned obsolescence
    13. Time is money • Time-based management
    14. A project without a critical path is like a ship without a rudder • Critical path analysis
    15. Taking the best from the best • Benchmarking