It's All About Who You Hire, How They Lead...and Other Essential Advice from a Self-Made Leader

It's All About Who You Hire, How They Lead...and Other Essential Advice from a Self-Made Leader

It's All About Who You Hire, How They Lead...and Other Essential Advice from a Self-Made Leader

It's All About Who You Hire, How They Lead...and Other Essential Advice from a Self-Made Leader


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American business leader, entrepreneur, and noted philanthropist Morton Mandel shares lessons he gleaned from co-founding and leading, along with his brothers Jack and Joe, Premier Industrial Corporation, a major industrial parts and electronic components manufacturer and distributor. Now for readers everywhere who are interested in studying leadership development, It’s All About Who describes Mandel’s approach to finding, recruiting and cultivating “A” players.

In his book, Mandel shares his fine-tuned set of practices to develop leaders that have proven to deliver dramatically better results. Containing sixteen core sections, “It’s All About Who” covers key strategic topics from “Building a Rich, Deep, and Ethical Culture” to “Killing Yourself for Your Customer” to “Using Business Ideas in the Social Sector.”

What makes Mandel unique is his selflessness in pursuing a life of purpose. Mandel has lived in two worlds: the world of profit and the world of social impact. Even as chairman and CEO of a New York Stock Exchange company for more than three decades, he spent as much as a third of his time in the social sector.

Mandel has personally founded more than a dozen non-profit organizations. His deep-seated passion is evident in the mission of his Foundation:  “To invest in people with the values, ability and passion to change the world.” 

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781118379882
Publisher: Wiley
Publication date: 11/28/2012
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 303,057
Product dimensions: 9.00(w) x 6.20(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

MORTON L. MANDEL is a self-made billionaire, entrepreneur, and philanthropist. With his brothers, Jack and Joseph, he cofounded Premier Industrial Corporation in 1940, eventually merging it with Farnell Electronics in a $3 billion deal. The three Mandel brothers also established the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation (, which funds numerous social leadership initiatives all over the world.

JOHN A. BYRNE is former executive editor of BusinessWeek, former editor in chief of Fast Company, and author of ten books, including the New York Times best seller Jack: Straight from the Gut with Jack Welch.

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Table of Contents

Editor’s Note By Warren Bennis xiii

Foreword By John A. Byrne xv

Prologue xxi

1 It’s All About Who 1
Hire the best • Seeking the enthusiastic yes • Five key things to look for • Hire when you don’t need to • Provide experience, demand the rest

2 The ABC’s of People 11
A simple truth revealed: relentlessly seek A players • Get rid of the C’s • Your first loyalty is to the organization • Know the difference between what is acceptable and what is possible • A’s attract other A’s

3 Building a Rich, Deep, and Ethical Culture 21
Why it pays off big-time to (1) Do what’s right and (2) Treat others with respect, fairness, and decency • Never abandon principle • Being scrupulously honest is enlightened self-interest

4 What Happens When You Ignore Culture, People, and Values 33
The soft stuff is the real stuff • In deal making, too little attention is paid to culture fit • People, culture, and values bring competitive distinction • Often the so-called little things make a difference

5 What I Learned from Peter Drucker 51
Improving the team is the leader’s primary job • Put your best person on your biggest opportunity •Meet regularly with the second- and third-level staff as CEO • Meet and greet the rank-and-fi le before management

6 Killing Yourself for Your Customer 69
Why superior customer service is a huge missed opportunity • Find a need and fill it • Create a culture dedicated to service • Always ask yourself how you could do better • A company devoted to customer service is in the business of exceeding expectations

7 Principles Make a Difference 79
Rules make “doing” easier and better • Smart policies liberate employees • Commit an organization’s core learning to written, visible guidelines

8 Factbooks: Key to Personal Discipline 89
How thoughtful standardized practices lead to better performance • Great execution requires discipline and focus • A painstaking devotion to the details • Break down a manager’s tasks into small manageable steps • Hold yourself and everyone accountable

9 Why We Swung Our Acquisitions Bat to Hit Singles, Not Home Runs 95
Buying niches, not size, is safer and better • Look for undermanaged businesses • Make carefully calculated risks, not bet-the-company gambles • Try to hit singles, not home runs

10 Lighting Candles 103
Lighting even one candle changes the world • Allow others to come up with and to help shape ideas • Group ownership brings a better result • Involvement leads to understanding • Understanding leads to commitment

11 A Gospel of Wealth 115
Pursue philanthropy as systematically as business • Bet on people • Select tough, persistent problems to tackle • Create mission statements, clear goals, and formal work plans

12 Using Business Ideas in the Social Sector 121
Sound management practices work in every setting and are a huge “missed opportunity” in philanthropy • Powerful results can come from seemingly simple business tools • Benefit from the lessons of the best performers • Commit to the continuing development of people

13 An Olive Tree 129
A simple truth re-lived: treating others in the proper way pays off big-time • Make your company a great place to work • Fully satisfy your customers • Fully satisfy your shareholders

14 Yes, I Can! 137
My leadership journey in business and philanthropy started when I first believed “Yes, I can” • Believe in yourself and your ideas to make the world a better place • Success does not come only from breakthroughs but also from hard work

15 Some Beacons to Steer By 147
Reducing stress is not an easy task—but worth tackling in a serious way • Carefully plan every workday • Diet, exercise, and sufficient rest • Adopt a formal personal system to help get more results • Think big, start small

16 If I Could Do It Over Again . . . 157
Why I would do the same thing over again in a heartbeat • Search for personal fulfillment • Do something significant with your life • Respect who you are and how you have lived your life • Love what you do

Appendix 163

Acknowledgments 173

The Authors 179

Index 181

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