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|The Art of Possibility||5|
|Medtronic--Restoring People to Full Life||16|
|Grameen Bank--Micro Lending for the Poor||26|
|Southwest Airlines--Being Whole||34|
|The Art of Timing||57|
|Royal Dutch/Shell--Using Scenario Analysis to Create Future Memories||66|
|Intel--Leaping Into the Future with Moore's Law||77|
|Southwest Airlines--Strike With the Force and Alacrity of a Puma||90|
|The Art of Leverage||101|
|Wal-Mart--An Agent for Customer||110|
|Dell Inc.--The Direct Connection||122|
|Southwest Airlines--Think Small||139|
|The Art of Mastery||159|
|Singapore--Thinking Schools, Learning Nation, and Gracious Society||172|
|The UCLA Bruins--Be Quick but Don't Hurry||186|
|Southwest Airlines--Lean, Fit, and Ready||195|
|The Art of Leadership||207|
|John Wooden--Success is Peace of Mind||215|
|Earl Bakken--Ready, Fire, Aim||226|
|Herb Kelleher--Making a Difference While Having Fun||236|
|In the Footsteps of Giants||259|
Posted January 28, 2006
Leader who are centered, self aware and live 'in the moment' have a unique presence. They make an a big impact on people because of their stillness, clarity, and humility. This book does a wonderful job of revealing how certain leaders have acquired the inner soul and spiritual presence to transform organizations. Leadership is an 'art' and this book teaches you how to become the artist! Many great stories and examples are included in each chapter.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 14, 2005
I never expected to discover a business book which could capture the essence of my philosophies that have got me into trouble several times in the corporate climate. Only last week I was being wrestled to the corporate carpet for my unorthodox approach to one of those controversies I always seem to be in the middle of. Fortunately for me one of the most revered corporations at my current place of employment was highlighted in The Art of Business. Earl Bakken over at Medtronic is considered be one of the most innovative and accessible CEO¿s ever to grace the corporate world. My own appreciation of this pioneer was enhanced substantially by his story and wisdom. He actually seeks out the mavericks for their unique ability to do the right thing at the wrong time. Along with Bakken are other stories that hold up the value of mavericks for corporate America or global concerns; Southwest Airlines is completely based on maverick philosophies, Sam Walton was considered a study in nonconformity, post apartheid economic success in South Africa has been based on a totally unorthodox approach to reconstruction. I won¿t spoil the fun and mention all the stories here because it¿s best for you to experience The Art of Business for yourself. For the rest of you corporate types pick up a copy and discover the true business phenomenon, the maverick.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 17, 2005
Seldom does a book come along which leaves so many solutions in its wake. Shareholders would be well advised to hold corporations accountable to the principals and practices professed between these covers. General Motors will learn some invaluable lessons here and base their own economic recovery on the lessons learned at GE. Besides the many varied business applications one can make use of there are guidelines for living that move fluidly between entrepreneur and social ethics. If you are searching for one book that can cover in detail what makes a good business great, struggling enterprise takeoff and the ethical atmosphere which makes life worth living than make The Art of Business that book. You won¿t be disappointed.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 16, 2005
I definitely recommend this book to all the entrepreneurs wishing for that magic key to unlock that breakthrough riddle. Before reading The Art of Business I found myself in a maze of theory and rhetoric as I continually ran into dead ends trying to position and market my company¿s products. Fortunately for me and my company The Art of Business gave me the directions and examples to position us ahead of the competition. This reader was taken on a journey where the results have been the confidence and knowledge to stand with the giants of industry. Many thanks and appreciations go out to the authors and those giants for sharing their secrets in this book.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 13, 2005
When I took my business plan into the bank last week they couldn¿t believe that I had been able to cover and provide for so many of the typical problems facing a start-up business. My wife and I both read and studied ¿The Art of Business¿ from which with her help I was able to bring the practices of the various examples into my business model. As a cabinet maker my business savvy is limited; never would I have considered the importance of: a strategic roadmap, scenario planning, information technology, and inventory financing. The chapter on leverage alone has given me the insights to go after the biggest box stores while using my suppliers and customers to promote my business. I have found that the parables or stories in this book are a guide to beating the odds for a new business like mine. The concepts in this book are so easy to understand and visualize, working in my business, that they are more like reading shop drawings for a cabinet than a business book. My advice to anyone considering this book is to get it and put it to work.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 18, 2005
There are many rewards to be found in The Art of Business. The timely comparisons between Sun Tzu¿s Art of War and current trends in business enable the reader to gain an intense understanding of how the Art¿s of War are mastered in today¿s market place. The vast information in The Art of Business is a collection of corporate biographical stories and personal testimonials by their founders and CEO¿s. This stimulating/quick read allows the reader to capture the driving spirit or Tao of thirty various industry leaders. Each of Sun Tzu¿s five Arts of War are given their own chapter. Art of Possibility: Fruition of enterprise vision. Art of Timing: Creating and capitalizing on the future. Art of Leverage: Identify and exploit all points of leverage. Art of Mastery: Discipline breeds passion, confidence and the balance to execute with wisdom and grace. Art of Leadership: Live and perform for a higher purpose where extreme profits are only a by-product. It is a rare occurrence when a book, especially a business book, comes along that has the hidden value to be a compendium for both business and living.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 6, 2005
I am not so sure all of the male executives interviewed for ¿The Art of Business¿ would credit their corporation¿s success to a matriarch society; however every example of successful businesses are based on the familial structure. The CEO¿s of the examples must be commended for stepping away from the masculine identity to allow their business families to mature and prosper in spite of themselves. From the way I read ¿The Art of Business¿ I can¿t understand why a woman isn¿t running this country. At least our matriarch abilities have not been forsaken by the examples of successful businesses based on the familial strategy which have driven civilization since we first started to crawl. I will recommend this book to my sisters for no other reason than to prove to themselves that they can maintain and promote their feminine identity in the business environment. For everyone else this book is a very good example of what a healthy business looks like; how they arrived at the top and continue to improve their business life and the lives of those around them.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 20, 2005
Before reading the Art of Business I assumed that success in business was determined by how ruthless the corporate officers were (check out The Apprentice and Donald Trump). The interviews and personal reflections by the big names of the business world opened my eyes to a new way of pursuing success. These stories of vision and business strategy though are not new. However the way Raymond and Stephanie Yeh relate them to the ancient teachings of Sun Tzu in his philosophical treatment of the winning ingredients of war as they correspond to business are very fresh. I had to keep reminding myself that I was reading a business book as the examples revealed more of the human side of these business ventures than how much money they were worth, which in my view is an equal measure of success.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 28, 2005
I really do not enjoy reading business books. I find most of them boring, astringent, and well¿boring. I have to admit that I was surprised at how well the Art of Business flows. It has stories, not monotonous lessons on strategy that I would never remember anyway. I love the very real people that jump off the page ¿ from Yunus, the incredibly courageous founder of Grameen Bank who wants to wipe out all poverty to good old John Wooden, whom I¿ve read a lot about in other books. This book is a surprisingly good read. It¿s a quick read, too, and includes a lot of little lessons I can use on a daily basis. It¿s not as simple as books like Who Moved My Cheese, but it has the same easy style. Quite enjoyable.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 28, 2005
Reading the Art of Business, I realized that here the authors have presented the question of do I want to be in the shadow of giants or follow their footsteps? The stories found in the Art of Business reveal more than the steps to the top. Raymond and Stephanie Yeh connect the dots between the most successful business practices and principles. From competitive sports to the war rooms of corporations, this book travels between the lines of the success that keeps some of the greatest minds at the top of their game. The reader is taken from complex business strategies to the ethical business practices of the truly successful corporationsWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 29, 2004
I normally don't write reviews- especially on books, but I enjoyed this book so much I have to share to others how much it's inspired me. This book is not a business book- it's motivational and uplifting. I feel so empowered reading about the amazing, successful people and surprised how down to earth these 'Giants' really are. Dr. Yeh has really made sense of the strategies to succeeding as a leader, as a better person. I highly recommended this book, great for young college guy like myself!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 26, 2004
The Art of Business is one of the most entertaining business books I've ever read, especially considering its topic-strategy-which can prove dry and uninteresting except to the academically inclined, under the best of circumstances. What I found most fascinating was the discussion of strategy, broken down into five 'arts,' is just as applicable to my personal life as it is to my business life. The book starts out with some Zen-type prose about doing business, which had me wondering whether this was going to be a good book or not, but then it moved into the stories and that's when it really took off. The authors outlined five different arts: possibility, timing, leverage, mastery, and leadership. All of these apply to business. What really struck me were the arts of possibility, leverage and leadership. In the chapter about possibility, the authors really made me step out of my comfort zone. They ask, 'How will your business make a difference in the world?' or 'What is your dream?' In terms of my personal life, it got me wondering, 'What is my dream?' I have what my mother calls, `gypsy feet,' so it got me wondering about my wandering, what is my dream? How do I want to make a difference in the world and my own life? The other aspect of the art of possibility is the art of thinking big. I especially like the story about Grameen Bank, where the professor has the dream of eliminating poverty. How big a dream is that!? It gets me thinking that anything I want to achieve is possible. I just have to dream it first. Then in the leverage section, they further bring to light the fact that I can create everything that I dream about-I just have to leverage everything around me. They gave this formula: first identify what you want, then figure out where it exists, and finally figure out how to get it. I was a little stumped at first, but then began to see how it works. They cite the story of an ancient general who ran out of arrows halfway through the battle. What did he do? He figured out that the enemy army was really jumpy and would shoot arrows at anything coming. He waited until a foggy morning then sent over ships filled with straw men wearing army uniforms. The enemy shot the straw men full of arrows and presto, the general had arrows again. I began to see that I could apply that kind of cleverness and resourcefulness to what I want in my personal life. Plus, there's a real sense of fun in that kind of clever art. Finally, leadership was a great concept to really make me think. I've always thought about leadership in terms of leading groups of people, but in reading I began to realize that I could become the leader of my own life. The way these authors write about it, leadership is about not letting my ego get in the way of my vision. It's about humility and service, concepts about which I've learned the hard way, both of which have benefited my life greatly. I never realized the extent to which these qualities are leadership qualities. The good news is, I now know I am the leader of my own life. As I got further into the book, got used to the Zen aphorisms I actually started to like them. I realized that this book is just as much about the Art of Life as it is about the Art of Business! Sincere thanks to the authors, Paula G.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 26, 2004
The ART OF BUSINESS is a spirtual blend of eternal wisdom gleaned from super successful companies and laser-like insight from Ray Yeh. The stories he tells and the way he tells them will help anyone interested in improving the organization - from the family to Fortune 500 companies!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 21, 2004
The authors of The Art of Business seem to know that work can be total drudgery for the average Joe. Whether you own your own business or work for someone else, the daily grind can be really hard to face day in and day out, year in and year out. What the authors do that is so great is add purpose, vitality, and fun into the workplace. Even though this book is ostensibly about strategy, I would say that the true purpose of this book is to give meaning to work. The stories in this book demonstrate that when you have meaning in your work, it turns the dull day-to-day stuff into something that you really want to do. When they talk about Herb Kelleher, Chairman of Southwest Airlines, going out on ¿Field Days¿ and moving luggage around do he can stay in touch with the daily activities of the people that work for him, that really touched and moved me. That was meaning in work¿when the execs really care and they show it through action, not just through words. The five arts show us that even if we work for other people, we can bring meaning and strategy to the work that we do, and it will help not just us but also the people we work for. For instance, in the Leverage chapter, they talk about all the ways we can bring all the resources we want and need to us with leverage. Well, you don¿t have to be your own boss to do that. If you work for someone, they will appreciate you being resourceful and leveraging everything in your environment to get the job done. Plus, that kind of leverage allows for creativity and actual enjoyment in the workplace. Finally, the leadership chapter is staggering. It makes me feel that I can be a leader no matter what I am doing and who I am working for. Leadership is seven qualities: big dreams, commitment to the vision, excellence, vulnerability (allowing others to help you), humility, peace of mind, and strong values. I¿m learning from the stories in this book, which outline not just the leaders but also the followers of great companies, that I can be a leader, and how that¿s important because only companies that are companies of leaders truly succeed. I'm not always sure how I might implement all the principles talked about in this book--it sometimes brings up more questions than it answers. But it does show me where I need to be looking for answers. It¿s an astonishingly inspiring book for a business book, and gives me hope for meaning in the daily routines of life in business.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 21, 2004
People have told me that strategy is important and, as a small business owner, while I agree with them theoretically, I never knew how to apply it to my own business. I¿ve attended lots of workshops and read lots of books on business, but strategy was just the vague thing that ¿I should do.¿ That¿s what I love about this book. It breaks down strategy into five specific arts, and it helps me see where I am making headway and where I am not. The five arts of strategy that the authors talk about are: 1) Art of Possibility: This is about defining a vision and a dream that makes you leap out of bed every morning. The authors assert that lots of companies have good visions, but they aren¿t big enough or good enough to motivate not just the business owner but everyone in the company. The case studies are about businesses that are on more of a crusade than just following a vision. They bring to life the power of what a vision really could be like. They review Medtronic (a medical electronics firm), Grameen Bank, and Southwest Airlines. I found the stories inspiring, but also a little daunting, because how can a small business owner really meet those very, very high expectations? This feeling is slightly alleviated at the end by a list of key points about how to create and keep the vision alive. 2) Art of Timing: This is about being at the beginning of the wave rather than at the end. It¿s about being at the right place at the right time, and determining which opportunities will help and which will not. The authors outline three ways to deal with the future: predict and respond accordingly to the future, predict and influence the future, and co-create with the forces of the future. The case studies demonstrate how successful companies can take any of the three roles, though they end with the conclusion that the co-creating option is ultimately the most successful. The information is very solid and sound here, and makes the reader ask questions about the driving forces and timing for their own industries. 3) Art of Leverage: This is the most stunning chapter in the book. The authors lay out many ways businesses can leverage their partners, suppliers, customers, employees, and most of all, competitors to achieve success. I had to stop every few paragraphs in this chapter to make notes. They give a formula whereby companies can identify the resources they need (money, customers, market share), identify where those resources are and who controls them, and devise ways to channel those resources to themselves. Very inspiring, highly practical stuff. 4) Art of Mastery: This is more about being better, cheaper, and faster. I believe that the material in this chapter is adequately covered in even much earlier books about reengineering and process innovation (Hammer and Champy and company, From Good to Great, etc.). One redeeming factor about this chapter is that the authors argue for the need to balance the growth in all directions of the company: process, infrastructure and culture. They make a strong argument, but there¿s not enough room in this chapter to cover what it really takes to get mastery. 5) Art of Leadership: This is another knockout chapter. The authors profile three leaders (Earl Bakken of Medtronic, Herb Kellher of Southwest Airlines, and John Wooden of the UCLA Bruins). Like the other stories, they are inspiring, but again, daunting. We know that these three ¿giants¿ have had incredible backgrounds and lives, but what about those of us who grew up in middle class America, who didn¿t have all these trials and tribulations to define their character? Luckily, the authors define the seven qualities of leadership at the end of this chapter. That defines in a very clear way what factors comprise leadership, and that¿s a big help. Leadership is a concept that¿s a lot like strategy: it¿s vague until someone defines the components for you. With those seven leadership qualities, I have something to measure my ownWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.