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Posted August 5, 2009
Bought it for the title
The title got my attention - it's great. The book isn't as great but it's worth a read.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Autobiographies have the inherent danger that the writer can't stand back from his own story. This book is no autobiography, but the same issue arises. Howard Behar was close to the top at Starbucks through the most formative years. It's not that he fails to mention problems and challenges. But I wanted someone to say "We got that hopelessly wrong" or "We were completely divided", but even where negative issues are mentioned mostly the answers seemed to materialize or harmony was reached.
But maybe that's how it was. For example, Open Forums to talk out issues, with a willingness to hear doubts, are a bold measure. So is sending cards to employees to celebrate anniversaries. There's a good story to be told and it is, and Starbucks is a great success. The fundamental message of the sub-title "Lessons on Putting People First" is important, and Starbucks has much to teach the rest of the corporate world. Well worth reading, just not as incisive as I'd want.