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Double Your Profits in Six Months or Less Paperback – 31 May 1995

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Reprint edition (31 May 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 088730740X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0887307409
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 1.5 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 127,194 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

One of the nations' foremost financial consultants shares 78 proven ways to cut costs dramatically, send productivity through the roof, and, in just six months, double profits."Simple and straightforward."--Jack Welch, Chairman of GE

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 13 May 1999
Format: Paperback
As CEO of one of the UK's most influential cost management consulting groups, we have taken the unprecedented step of giving all of our 100+ consultants a copy of Mr Fifers book. It provides some excellent examples of how monies can be saved by almost any senior executive keen to reduce costs and increase profits. The many ideas and suggested methods this book provide are simple but effective ways for ERA to help our clients make more money! Thank you Bob Fifer.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 29 Dec. 1998
Format: Paperback
Fifer does an outstanding job of providing a brief overview of the general ideas relating to maximizing profit by reducing unnecessary overhead and increasing the income side of things. The bulk of this quick read is aimed at specific suggestions which you can put into effect immediately. I highly recommend this book to any small business owner or corporate type who is responsible for actually making the money that the employees spend.
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By Peter Corijn on 23 Jun. 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Common sense, hard-nosed, full of excellent tips on how to drive costs down. An outstanding read!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 55 reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
A must-read, for your company's and your own survival. 17 Aug. 2001
By Wilson W. Wyatt, Jr. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is a real book, an important one, about real cost-cutting, in a real world. It has been used by many corporate leaders as a "bible" for increasing profits by cutting costs...all company costs that do not actually create a direct profit. That means cutting most of middle management, some senior management, and most employees who do not have direct responsibility for adding daily value to the bottom line. It preaches renegotiating or eliminating vendor contracts on a regular basis. It teaches questioning the value of any consultant or outside service. It is a roadmap for rapid, perhaps severe, cost-cutting to achieve immediate profitability.
This is not a book for the timid. It is not a feel-good book, except for those who enjoy counting their money. It will make most readers feel uncomfortable, perhaps insecure. These are among the important reasons to read the book.
This book was required reading by Sanford Weill and Bob Lipp for all the senior managers of The Travelers Insurance Companies when they engineered the takeover of the ailing company in 1993. It created shock among many of the senior management of the old, established Travelers, but the book prescribed an exact remedy for turning the corporation into a highly profitable company, now a thriving part of CITICORP...one of the great financial corporations in America.
If the reader is a CEO or senior officer, this book is a guaranteed prescription for increasing profitability. If the reader is an employee, at almost any level, this book should be required reading for one's survival. If the reader is a vendor, a consultant, or from an association that provides a service to corporate America, the book should be required reading, because it imparts the knowledge of a real business culture that drives decision-making...and possibly will drive their future relationship with the company.
The book lacks concern for human resources, for many of the people who make up a company's workforce. They can quickly become a drain on profits. Loyalty, human compassion, sense of community, and many human skills are too easily forgotten or deemed insignificant to the bottom line. This is one of the great faults of the book, of its philosophy, and of its short-term prescription for profits. It is why it only deserves four stars, instead of five. It would deserve five stars or more if the author had enough insight to find value in loyalty, human skills (other than direct sales), and the importance of communities or governments (of people) in the ability of a corporation to provide valid and profitable services. In this area, it is deficient.
The book is very simple and easily read in one sitting. It should be required reading by anyone with a serious interest in business...or anyone who has an interest in an important modern business culture, for better or worse, but certainly for profit.
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Useful if applied with common sense, but dangerous in the wrong hands. 29 Nov. 2013
By Wazu - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A Fortune magazine article mentioned 3G's acquisition of Heinz and Burger King and 3G's efforts to cut costs. The article covered how 3G fired 90% of R&D department at Burger King, made huge cuts in HR, accounting, and legal departments. Burger King now has a corporate management turnover rate similar to the turnover rate of low wage workers at its fastfood restaurants; this can't be good for long term growth or attracting employees who have mortgages to pay. This book is considered 3G's bible when operating an acquired company, so I figured I had to read the book. The book focuses on cutting costs by any means necessary. The book would be most useful for large corporations that have gotten bloated. At Heinz 3G fired 14 of the 15 executives with full vesting of retirement plans. Cutting luxuries like corporate jets and helicopters make sense. This book also declares war on the company's own employees as necessary evils that need to be cut. Some of the advice is good, but some of it is sleazy and could create long term harm to a business. Step 24: (Declare Freezes and Cuts) Send a letter declaring an across-the board 3% reduction to suppliers. Make sure the letter is from someone high up and intimidating....(after getting the bill) deduct 3% from the bill and say, 'Didn't you read my CEO's letter? Are you trying to get me fired? Step 37 (Accounts Payable) "Never pay a bill until the supplier asks for it at least twice. You'll be surprised: A few suppliers will take as much as two years before they finally get around to asking for their money." Every expense is reviewed as to be cut unless it contributes directly to the bottom line. The problem is how do you value intangible results, such as an accountant who creates a preventative system of checks and balances that prevents the embezzlement of $20M by an employee? Or an HR or attorney who creates preventative measures that prevent a $50M sexual harassment lawsuit? How does a company value such contributions?
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Interesting read which will make you uncomfortable 16 Jun. 2013
By Joe Stephens - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was written almost 20 years ago. A few parts of the author's advice may appear to be dated, but there is enough content to recommend the book. The author distills his advice into 78 steps taking up less than 250 pages. It is a quick read.

In today's highly competitive business environment, it is important to instill a culture of cost consciousness. In the author's opinion every cost is up for grabs and needs to be justified. There is waste in any organization such as too many layers of management, the amount of time spent in meetings, spending on offsite meetings, and unnecessary reports. However when it comes marketing, the author recommends outspending the competition in both good and bad times.

Some parts of the book will likely make readers uncomfortable including the lack of concern for many of the people who make up a company's workforce and certain suggestions for extracting concessions from suppliers. In the latter case some people will question the ethics of his approach. This book is certainly not "If Aristotle Ran General Motors." It is not about pleasing multiple stakeholder groups. It is a no nonsense book about improving the bottom line.

There is no doubt a company can improve the bottom line following the author's advice especially in the first few years. I would be interested in case studies of some of the author's client companies. What has been the longer term impact on their corporate culture, employee turnover and relations with suppliers? How have their top line and bottom line growth fared over time?

In reading this book I had to work to separate the message from the messenger. I was turned off a bit by the author's tone. It is interesting that the author left Kaiser Associates, Inc. in 2000 and set up his own firm which I believe is just a one person operation. I did some research and found an interesting quote from a May 28, 2007 interview with U.S. News and World Report.

"I ran one company [Kaiser, his consulting firm] for 18 years. The company did very, very well, but we hit a wall. If I knew then what I know now, I would still be there, and the company would be 20 times larger. I would come into the office and, by force of my person and bravado, try to move the company by myself. It worked until we had eight offices on five continents. If I had had more humility and been more principled in how I treated other people, I would have built an organization with depth. No CEO is good at everything, but when people perceive you are selfish and greedy, the holes remain exposed and don't get closed. When you have a strong character, people rally behind you in a way that plugs those holes."
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
This should be named "How to treat your employees and vendors very badly". 16 May 2014
By Jim Wings - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book is Anheuser-Busch InBev's "play book". As the book tells them to do, AB treats 90% of employees like crap, and don't pay vendors for 120 days. They recently terminated all of their St. Louis Data Center employees, and told them if they wanted their jobs back, they had to apply at an outsourcing company. They would get 20% less pay, no health benefits, no vacation, no holidays, no savings plan, and no pension. This is from a company that last year gave $1.7 Billion (yes Billion) to the top 40 InBev executives in bonuses and stock options. I will never purchase an Anheuser-Busch InBev product again.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Managers must read! 12 Jun. 2010
By AndyRacer20 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Got the indication from a Brazilian business magazine - Exame - issued January 2010. Marcel Telles, one of the greatest Brazilian entrepreneurs, recommended the book, as a must read, and as the book that influenced him the most. You might ask, who is this person...well, he is one of the guys behind AB-Inbev deal!

Although the book dates from 1993 (I don't like much old business books), most principles are very interesting and totally applicable for today's market. The focus on cost reduction is clear, and can generate blunt results. I can clearly understand how inspiring this book were for some successful Brazilian companies in the past decade, specially the ones from GP group. Some of the tips such as giving away your own office (as a CEO) to bring cost down is a true example on how you can demonstrate to your crew how committed you are in order to maximize the company's result. Nice reading.
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