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Conscious Business [Hardcover]

Fred Kofman
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
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Book Description

17 Jan 2007
Consciousness is the main source of organizational greatness. "Conscious business," explains Fred Kofman, means finding your passion and expressing your essential values through your work. A conscious business seeks to promote the intelligent pursuit of happiness in all its stakeholders. It produces sustainable, exceptional performance through the solidarity of its community and the dignity of each member.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 325 pages
  • Publisher: Sounds True Inc; annotated edition edition (17 Jan 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1591795176
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591795179
  • Product Dimensions: 22.1 x 16.3 x 2.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 330,499 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

FRED KOFMAN, PH.D is co-founder and president of Axialent, a consulting company devoted to helping organizations succeed through effectiveness, solidarity, and integrity. Fred holds a doctorate in economics from the University of California at Berkeley. From 1990 to 1996 he was senior researcher at Peter Senge's Center for Organizational Learning and assistant professor of management accounting and control systems at MIT's Sloan School of Management, where in 1992 he was named Teacher of the Year. Since 1999, he has collaborated with Ken Wilber at the Integral Institute's business and spiritual centers. Besides his consulting activities, Fred teaches Leadership at the University of Notre Dame. He is the author of the book Metamanagement, published in Spanish, Portuguese, and German. For more information, see www.axialent.com. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover
Conscious Business is the first book I've read on an important subject I'd like to tackle as an author: How to move those in an organization from focusing on their selfish interests to concentrating on what creates the most good for the most people . . . with the least potential harm to any individual. I thought that Dr. Kofman did a good job in defining one path to creating mutual benefit in Conscious Business. If people in your organization seem to be emphasizing their own careers rather than the tasks that need doing, this book is a must-read for you!

Let me agree with Dr. Kofman about his warning for readers: It's much easier to understand his principles than apply them. But with practice, you can do great things.

Here are the goals he sets:

"In the impersonal It dimension, the goal is to accomplish the organization's mission, enhancing its ability to continue doing so in the future, and delivering outstanding long-term returns to shareholders. In the interpersonal We dimension, the goal is to establish cooperative, trusting, and mutually respectful relationships, a community of shared purpose and values in which people feel they belong. In the personal I dimension, the goal is to live in a state of flow, feeling a transcendent happiness that comes from living in full integrity, with one's principles and ideals."

As you can see from this quote, Dr. Kofman draws heavily from his interest in Buddhist tradition and other streams of spiritual beliefs that are outside of the Judeo-Christian tradition. The text is enlivened by quotes from many sides of the spiritual spectrum and psychologists. As a result, the material will speak directly and deeply in places to virtually any reader, regardless of background and beliefs.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
There are two kinds of people in the world of business (including the business of life!) - those who have read this book, and those who will read it. Conscious Business is about `entering the market with helping hands'.

"This Way has no return and it never ends. There is nowhere to arrive, no final summit to conquer. Only higher and higher reaches of the human spirit. Whenever I feel like I've gotten it, that I am finally in control, I am humbled by a challenge that exceeds by ability to respond. However, I have found peace and satisfaction in success beyond success."

To understand `Conscious Business' and `success beyond success' you have to read this book. It establishes the conscious business organizational map on a 3X3 matrix, with three dimensions of the organization as a noun (the impersonal `It', the interpersonal `We' and the personal `I') and three dimensions of the organization as a verb (the `having' product, the `doing' process, and the `being' platform).

And it establishes that the highest leverage is in beginning with the platform or `culture' and its systemic artefacts, because that drives or causes everything else. There are seven attributes of a conscious business culture, namely unconditional responsibility, essential integrity, ontological humility, authentic communication, constructive negotiation, impeccable coordination and finally emotional mastery. Each of these are explained in a manner which will touch your left brain, your right brain, and your heart.

The book begins with an extraordinary prologue, and an extraordinary epilogue, both reflecting the deeply personal experiences of the author. Reading them will make you agree with Ken Wilber, who calls Fred Kofman a `genius with a heart as big as his brain, if that's possible'. If you savour the experience of upliftment at work, and would like a ready reckoner of that on your table, gift yourself this book today.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A look beyond and inside 4 Oct 2002
Format:Audio Cassette
Conscious Business offers a different way to look at business behaviour. The author presents a set of basic principles, later these are illustrated with specific case studies and at the end introduces the philisophical background upon which these principles and examples are based upon. The book was first published in Spanish as "Meta-Management"; "Meta" in greek means "beyond", pointing Kofman's intentions to go beyond the usual realm of superficial and self evident truths frequently found in business literature. One of the premises of the book is that we act in ways in which are consistent with our basic being, in the ontlogical sense of being. Emphasis is placed on re-visiting our own definitions of who we are and the basic motivations that drive us. Examples show very clear procedures of how Kofman, in his long career as a consultant to business organizations, can induce people to look at their own behaviour and produce changes. This self observation is the essence of being more aware, being conscious of the way we behave when conducting business. However, and going back to the book's original title in the Spanish version, the awakening of consciousness is a matter not only restricted to the business world. If we want to be consistent, being conscious is a full time commitment, on and off business hours.
The theorical frame of ideas for Kofman's book can be traced back to his collaboration and participation in the Society for Organizational Learning, led by Peter Senge at the Sloan School of Management at MIT, and in Ken Wilber's work. Senge, author of "The Fifth Discipline" and "The Fifth Discipline Handbook" -where Kofman signs one of the chapters- introduced Kofman into the world of business training and consulting. An Economist by training, with a Ph.
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