The Source of Success: Five Enduring Principles at the Heart of Real Leadership


Dramatic change has swept the business world inÊrecent years,rendering standard paradigms ofÊleadership obsolete.

In The Source of Success, Peter Georgescu, formerÊCEO ofthe world-renowned advertising agency Young & Rubicam, revealsthe nature of the new economic world, and shows what it takes towin in this intensely competitive arena. Georgescu presents a newstandard of leadership that focuses on the key source of value intoday's corporation: the relationship between the ...

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The Source of Success: Five Enduring Principles at the Heart of Real Leadership

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Dramatic change has swept the business world inÊrecent years,rendering standard paradigms ofÊleadership obsolete.

In The Source of Success, Peter Georgescu, formerÊCEO ofthe world-renowned advertising agency Young & Rubicam, revealsthe nature of the new economic world, and shows what it takes towin in this intensely competitive arena. Georgescu presents a newstandard of leadership that focuses on the key source of value intoday's corporation: the relationship between the informed customerand the creative employee—a relationship, he shows, that mustbe built with honesty and integrity. Georgescu's vision rests onfive crucial principles, which together can unleash a tremendousuntapped reservoir of energy within our organizations, and withinourÊselves:

  • Creative capacity and the brand integrity that grows from itare an organization's most important assets.
  • Enlightened leaders inspire creativity through understanding,cooperation, and respect.
  • Competence and execution are as important as ever, but theymust be aimed at building intimacy with the customer.
  • Alignment is the critical concept fortheÊtwenty-first-century organization.
  • Great companies don't happen without leaders who havetransformed themselves.

Rich on many levels, the book is filled with stories taken fromthe author's experience—his early life experiences growing upin communist Romania and his professional career working with themost powerful companies and brands in the world.

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What People Are Saying

From the Publisher
"In The Source of Success, Peter Georgescu tackles twoissues that have special resonance in today’s business world:creativity and integrity. At the intersection of the two stands thetype of enlightened business leader we need in the twenty-firstcentury. Peter shares important insights forged through aremarkable career—and fascinating life story."
—Bob Wright, vice chairman, GE, and chairman and CEO, NBCUniversal

"Peter Georgescu gives us all a lot to talk about in TheSource of Success. He tells us what’s essential forbusiness success and then shows us how to attain it. The core ofthis values-based business book is the belief that to be a businesssuccess you must be a good person. In a time of corporate scandal,his message has never been more right. A great read."
—Bill Bradley, U.S. Senator

"One of the most enduring principles for success is integrity,in both our professional and personal lives. The Source ofSuccess should be considered a leadership compass for new, aswell as established, executives to achieve greatness intoday’s business world."
—Leonard A. Lauder, chairman, Estée Lauder

"Peter Georgescu eloquently articulates a vision of decency,fairness, and humanity in corporate life. A utopian dream? Not atall. What Georgescu is really describing is the optimum recipe forsuccess in the twenty-first century."
—Vernon Jordan

"Peter Georgescu’s career has allowed him to work withsome of the great companies and great leaders in the world. Fromthis perspective he offers observations and very provocative adviceon what it takes to win in today’s world of ‘excesssupply.’ This is a book that really makes you think. Theviews are fresh; and Peter is a wonderful storyteller."
—Shelly Lazarus, chairman and CEO, Ogilvy & MatherWorldwide

"With America still reeling from the orgy of corporatedishonesty and malfeasance symbolized by ENRON, there is already abacklash against more regulation of business. In this climate ofcynicism and mistrust, this timely book comes as a breath of freshair and courage. Corporate leaders may smile at being told theyneed to be honest and decent to succeed today, but this book shouldwipe the cynical smiles away. Peter Georgescu, former CEO of Young& Rubicam, warns that global forces have created a brutal newbusiness environment in which productivity outstrips demand, theconsumer has won, and every company’s survival is always atstake. Georgescu should know: on Madison Avenue he was a mastershaper of demand. Now, he argues, to win and keep loyal customers,business will have to adopt revolutionary values: honesty, trust,respect for others, integrity, and accountability. Imagine! Thoseare the very values business has claimed to be observing allalong."
—Robin MacNeil, newscaster, journalist, and author

"What I find so thoroughly refreshing about The Source ofSuccess is that it presents a real-world practitioners’approach to challenges which all of us, not just the five hundredmen and women who run Fortune 500 firms, face on a day-to-daybasis."
—Bernard B. Beal, chairman and CEO M R Beal & Company;chariman, A Better Chance

"Peter Georgescu’s long career exemplifies integrity andcreativity. This profound book demonstrates why those qualities arecrucial to success in business today."
—Lodewijk de Vink, former chairman, CEO, Warner Lambert

"Peter Georgescu describes the tsunami-like forces sweeping overall companies and industries today, and he provides the keys forsurvival, success, and prosperity in the new competitive landscape.He walks the walk."
—Robert Haas, chairman of the board, Levi Strauss & Co.

"Peter Georgescu writes a winning book, offering great insightand practical guidance to achieving evolutionary leadership throughcompassion, integrity and strength of character. No combination ismore formidable than strategy and character and the habits ofaction one develops in meeting great challenges. An invaluableread!"
—Steve Heyer, president and CEO, Starwood

"The concept of universal surplus is one every business leadershould take to heart. There are few, if any, real sustainablecompetitive advantages in the business world. As a result, everyenterprise has to organize itself to win through intense andsustained change activity at all levels and in all segments of itsactivities. The five principles are those that can inspire andempower this kind of sustained change in a complex organization.People will follow, and multiply the actions of top management inways we cannot even imagine. Peter brings all this to life inengaging examples."
—Michael H. Jordan, chairman of the board and CEO, EDS

"When Peter Georgescu speaks of the principles essential tosuccess, he means principles, not motivational tools or managementgimmicks. The Source of Success is fundamentally aboutdeveloping the character and the wisdom you need to prevail in ahighly competitive world. This is an essential book fortoday’s business leaders—and tomorrow’s."
—Mike Miles, former chairman, CEO, KFC, Kraft, Philip Morris

"This is a book written by one of America's most innovative andtalented business leaders. His notion of a new competitiveenvironment—one where supply greatly exceedsdemand—explains why so many once dominant market leaders havefaltered. They failed to learn how to compete effectively againstfaster-moving, more innovative new competitors. But it isGeorgescu’s firsthand case examples of so many specificleaders’ successes and failures where so much learning andwisdom unfold. His experience-based assessment of what it takes towin in today’s much more competitive environment alone makesThe Source of Success worth studying, not justreading."
—Andrall E. Pearson, former chairman, Yum! Brands

"Peter Georgescu’s riveting account of his boyhood is, initself, well worth the price of this book. But his keen insightsinto the power of creativity and the nature of true leadership arelaced with compelling, real-life examples, which make The Sourceof Success a winner, like the author himself."
—Keith Reinhard, chairman, DDB Worldwide

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787980375
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 8/22/2005
  • Series: J-B US non-Franchise Leadership Series, #151
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 0.48 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Georgescu is chairman emeritus of EYoung & RubicamInc. Under his leadership, EYoung & Rubicam transformedfrom a private to a publicly held company. The company built themost extensive database on global branding and from its findingsdeveloped a proprietary model for diagnosing and managing brands.Georgescu was elected to the Advertising Hall of Fame in 2001.

David Dorsey is the author of The Force, which wasselected as one of the ten best business books of the year byBusinessWeek. He is a freelance writer who has contributed tomagazines such as Fast Company, Esquire, and Inc., amongothers.

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Table of Contents

Foreword, by Ram Charan.


1. The End of the World as We Know It.

2. Creativity: Tomorrow’s Factory Today.

3. Enlightened Leadership: No More Mr. Tough Guy.

4. Competency: The Essential Tools.

5. Alignment: The Magic Word.

6. Values: Dare to Be Good.

Postscript: A Better Chance.


The Authors.


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