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Suggested Reading

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  • Moneyball

    The Art of Winning an Unfair Game

    by Michael Lewis

    Most businesses measure the wrong things. Traditional financial statements tell something about where the business has been but they don’t reveal very much about the “why” or give much of an idea about where the business is going. Using his masterful storytelling skills, Lewis tells a captivating story of how one baseball team used data to become one of the most successful teams of its era, despite having the lowest payroll. “Moneyball” delivers an urgent business lesson about moving beyond the way things have always been done and challenging the conventions of your profession, your industry, and your own way of thinking—to find new ways to succeed. “Moneyball” is a good sports book, but an outstanding business book.

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  • Hidden Champions of the Twenty-First Century

    Success Strategies of Unknown Market Leaders

    by Hermann Simon

    Herman Simon defines “Hidden Champions” as medium-sized, unknown companies that have quietly, under the radar, become market leaders in their respective industries. Going inside more than a thousand hidden champions around the world, Simon reveals the common patterns, behaviors, and approaches that make these secretive companies successful by resisting popular management fads, and pursuing such common-sense strategies such as focusing on core capabilities (defining a narrow market), establishing long-term relationships with customers, innovating continuously, build a strong corporate culture, and developing a global presence. The hidden champions represent a clear contrast to the shortsighted practices that have brought many corporate giants crashing down, and prove that even management in the 21st Century should be based on healthy common sense.

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  • What Really Works

    The 4+2 Formula for Sustained Business Success

    by William Joyce, Nitin Nohria and Bruce Roberson

    With hundreds of well-known management practices and prescriptions promoted by consultants and available to business, which are really effective and contribute to the growth and continued success of a company? Which do little or nothing? Through a 5-year study the authors set out to find the management practices that actually promote long-term growth and success. Analyzing data on 200 common management practices the authors developed a “4+2” (4 primary and 2 of 4 possible secondary) formula made up of practices that, if followed carefully, lead to sustained business success. Companies they identify as winners consistently followed successful practices in all four of the primary areas (strategy, execution, culture and structure) and any two secondary areas (talent, leadership, innovation, and mergers and partnerships). The key to long-term success, they argue, is implementing effective programs in the six areas simultaneously.

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  • Hidden Value

    How Great Companies Achieve Extraordinary Results With Ordinary People

    by Charles O’Reilly and Jeffrey Pfeffer

    “Hidden Value” argues that the best companies win not by acquiring the right people—but by building the right organization. O'Reilly and Pfeffer warn that most companies place too much effort on attracting star performers while smart companies are doing something much more advantageous and far more difficult to copy - they're building organizations that make it possible for ordinary people at every level of an organization to do extraordinary things. The authors provide detailed case studies of several organizations in different industries - including Southwest Airlines, Cisco Systems, The Men's Wearhouse, and NUMMI - to illustrate how long-term success comes from value-driven, interrelated systems that align good people management with corporate strategy.

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