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The Three Rules: How Exceptional Companies Think Hardcover – 6 Jun 2013

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Portfolio Penguin (6 Jun. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0670922951
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670922956
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 3.4 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 503,841 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Michael E. Raynor is a Director at Deloitte Consulting LLP, where he explores the challenges of corporate strategy, innovation and growth with clients in a number of different industries. He is the coauthor, with Clayton Christensen, of the bestselling book The Innovator's Solution, and the author of the critically acclaimed The Strategy Paradox and The Innovator's Manifesto.

Mumtaz Ahmed is an engineer and accountant who works in the Strategy & Operations service department of Deloitte Consulting LLP.


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Robert Morris TOP 100 REVIEWER on 6 Jun. 2013
Format: Hardcover
With rare exception, the best business books are research/evidence-driven and that is certainly true of this one. Michael Raynor and Mumtaz Ahmed rigorously examined a database of more than 25,000 companies from hundreds of industries throughout a period of more than four decades and eventually identified 344 companies that qualified as statistically "exceptional." That is, 174 "Miracle Workers" (the best of the best) and 170 "Long Runners" (exceptional but at a lower level). But after five years of research, they failed to identify a consistent pattern of behavior that separated the exceptional companies from all the others.

Eventually, they shifted their attention from what people in these companies did to series of hypotheses about how people in these companies [begin italics] thought [end italics]. Their conclusion is that exceptional companies have people who consistently make the best decisions about (a) what to do, (b) how to do it, (c) what not to do, and (d) why. For example, which questions to ask? Which problems to solve? When and where to compete?

In this context, I am reminded of a passage in the first chapter of a book co-authored by Noel Tichy and Warren Bennis, Judgment: How Winning Leaders Make Great Calls, in which they assert that what really matters "is not how many calls a leader gets right, or even what percentage of calls a leader gets right. Rather it is important how many of the [begin italics] important [end italics] ones he or she gets right." They go on to suggest that effective leaders "not only make better calls, but they are able to discern the really important ones and get a higher percentage of them right.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ian Machan on 3 Jun. 2015
Format: Paperback
An excellent, data driven piece of work that tries and succeeds to establish how businesses at the top of their game think and act compared to their peers. With a statistical rigour that could be overwhelming, their text explains with a generous helping of tables and graphs, their simple conclusions. In following those companies over extended periods of time they also explore those companies that found the secret, lost the secret and in some cases managed to keep it.

While you examine the graphs and look at some of the companies selected you may challenge some of the "Miracle worker" tags, such as Abercrombie & Fitch, for example. However the analysis and your own involvement in the work is an education.
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By Dr. Peter Davies TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 2 July 2015
Format: Kindle Edition
This is a fascinating book. It boils down to three rules. There are three rules that predict high performance in companies that can be sustained over time:-
1. Better before cheaper
2. Revenue before cost
3. There are no other rules.

The bulk of the book is devoted to showing the evidence that the authors have examined thoroughly to justify these strong conclusions. The data is well and fairly presented, and is convincing. The authors have done us all a great service by doing this research and documenting it thoroughly for us as readers.

The three rules lead to some sharp implications for many companies and organisations. How many companies are still trying to squeeze out extra profit per pound? How many government institutions are unable or unwilling to raise cash to stop a long term revenue drain? The race to be faster, better, cheaper and so on is actually a competitive race to the bottom. Innovation, keeping up service quality, looking beyond an upfront cost are what actually keep businesses developing and growing.

This book is a great help in simplifying the outline of high performance and service delivery. I can recommend reading it for those of you who want to check its validity. If you are happy to accept a summary then you can start using the three rules immediately.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Darcy on 5 Jan. 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The three rules felt intuitively 'right' to me - so I guess I was an easy sell - but the authors back up the top-level message with some impressive statistical research and in-depth analysis. Thoroughly recommended.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The book arrived on time and in good condition.
I have not read it all, but the early passages are thought-provoking and helpful
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