Small Giants: Companies That Choose to Be Great Instead of Big [NOOK Book]

Overview

It’s an axiom of business that great companies grow their revenues and profits year after year. Yet quietly, under the radar, a small number of companies have rejected the pressure of endless growth to focus on more satisfying business goals. Goals like being great at what they do . . . creating a great place to work . . . providing great customer service . . . making great contributions to their communities . . . and finding great ways to lead their lives. In Small Giants, veteran journalist Bo Burlingham takes ...

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Small Giants: Companies That Choose to Be Great Instead of Big

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Overview

It’s an axiom of business that great companies grow their revenues and profits year after year. Yet quietly, under the radar, a small number of companies have rejected the pressure of endless growth to focus on more satisfying business goals. Goals like being great at what they do . . . creating a great place to work . . . providing great customer service . . . making great contributions to their communities . . . and finding great ways to lead their lives. In Small Giants, veteran journalist Bo Burlingham takes us deep inside fourteen remarkable companies that have chosen to march to their own drummer. They include Anchor Brewing, the original microbrewer; CitiStorage Inc., the premier independent records-storage business; Clif Bar & Co., maker of organic energy bars and other nutrition foods; Righteous Babe Records, the record company founded by singer-songwriter Ani DiFranco; Union Square Hospitality Group, the company of restaurateur Danny Meyer; and Zingerman’s Community of Businesses, including the world-famous Zingerman’s Deli of Ann Arbor. Burlingham shows how the leaders of these small giants recognized the full range of choices they had about the type of company they could create. And he shows how we can all benefit by questioning the usual definitions of business success. In his new afterward, Burlingham reflects on the similarities and learning lessons from the small giants he covers in the book.



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What People Are Saying

From the Publisher
This well-written book should inspire thousands of entrepreneurs to reject a mantra of growth for growth’s sake in favor of a passionate dedication to becoming the absolute best. Bo Burlingham reminds us of a vital truth: big does not equal great, and great does not equal big. (Jim Collins, author of Good to Great)

It aims to do for small private companies what In Search of Excellence did two decades ago for big public companies: shine a light on a handful of business practices the author admires, and which he believes are the reason some companies consistently do better than others. (Joseph Nocera, The New York Times)

Small Giants is one of the most relevant and articulate arguments for staying bold and creative, intimate and manageable as I have ever read. I guarantee that expression and the arguments for staying small will cause a collective sigh of relief from thousands of entrepreneurs. (Anita Roddick, founder of The Body Shop)

With new management books arriving by the boatload, Bo Burlingham has somehow managed the near impossible—he’s given us a true original. Moreover, in the process he may have ‘discovered’ the most interesting and under-reported corner of the U.S. economy. In short, Small Giants is a Large Masterpiece. Bo’s reporting is stupendous, and his writing and storytelling skills make the book equal parts fun and profound. (Tom Peters, author of In Search of Excellence)

The fourteen companies that Bo Burlingham... features in his new book Small Giants demonstrate conclusively that a company can resist the temptation to keep getting bigger and bigger—and wind up better for it. (Cecil Johnson, The Fort Worth Star- Telegram)

For all you harried entrepreneurs out there, Bo Burlingham has a reassuring message: Relax. Bigger isn’t necessarily better. The wonderful stories in Small Giants show you how to prosper by retaining the vision of excellence that got you into business in the first place. (Rosabeth Moss Kanter, author of Confidence)

Bo Burlingham’s done for private companies what Jim Collins did for public companies in Good to Great. (Steve Pearlstein, The Washington Post)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781101191385
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 3/27/2007
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 268
  • Sales rank: 223,594
  • File size: 337 KB

Meet the Author

Bo Burlingham is editor at large at Inc. magazine. He has also written for Esquire, Harper’s, Mother Jones, and The Boston Globe, among other publications, and is the coauthor, with Jack Stack, of The Great Game of Business and A Stake in the Outcome.


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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2008

    Giants Indeed

    In a journalistic (rather than purely analytic) style, Bo Burlingham gives us portraits and insights into the operations (and entrepreneurs behind) several small companies which chose to remain small and be great rather than grow at any cost. Their reasons are clear as are their successes. One need not be a Luddite to appreciate the personal involvement of these people with their companies, employees and products and why they are so successful in both business and life. Fun stuff, and inspiring.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2006

    Big bright stories about small great companies

    Some companies intentionally stay small so that they can be the best at what they do. In the world of globalization, these companies oppose the trend toward unbridled growth. They want to be strong, local and contained. Magazine writer and author Bo Burlingham provides profiles, or 'field reports,' covering 14 'small giants' - companies whose hands-on leaders kept them small, involved in their communities and focused on quality. Burlingham sometimes takes you up close and personal with his characters, so you read about their divorces, kids, personal finances and how long they worked in the stock room, as well as about the history of their companies. This magazine-style level of personal detail makes it clear that his mission isn¿t to teach you how to run a small giant, but to explore the nature of locally rooted, passionately led, deliberately small companies. We find that the author¿s focus on unique privately held companies is very valuable for the leaders of small businesses, especially those who are deciding just how big they want their companies to become.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2006

    SWEET!

    Great book for any small business owner. Burlingham explains 14 different privately owned businesses that have extrodinary accomplishments.

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