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Reviews Written by
Rolf Dobelli "getAbstract" (Switzerland)
(REAL NAME)   

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Fixing the Game: Bubbles, Crashes, and What Capitalism Can Learn from the NFL
Fixing the Game: Bubbles, Crashes, and What Capitalism Can Learn from the NFL
by Roger L Martin
Edition: Hardcover

4.0 out of 5 stars Winning idea that corporate America can score by following the National Football League, 26 Oct. 2012
Roger L. Martin, dean of the University of Toronto's Rotman School of Management and a life-long sports enthusiast, believes the 2008 mortgage meltdown was only the most recent crisis in the chronically ill US economy and that another setback is inevitable unless American business leaders change their approach. He traces the US economy's problems to the mid-1970s, when corporate philosophy shifted from serving consumers to placating shareholders. He calls for a return to the old business model of paying executives based on real achievement not on meeting or missing projections. He cites the US National Football League (pre-referee strike) as the perfect illustration of how well a real-rewards model can work if executives put their customers first. "It isn't about how profitable a company wants to be," Martin says, "It is about in what way the company becomes profitable." getAbstract believes that his playbook can help corporations get back in the game.


The 20% Doctrine: How Tinkering, Goofing Off, and Breaking the Rules at Work Drive Success in Business
The 20% Doctrine: How Tinkering, Goofing Off, and Breaking the Rules at Work Drive Success in Business
by Ryan Tate
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £16.99

5.0 out of 5 stars A compelling case for letting your employees' creativity run wild...at times, 23 Oct. 2012
Veteran business journalist Ryan Tate explores how firms generate innovation based on Google's approach, which allows employees to spend 20% of their paid time on personal projects. Google's idea migrated to Flickr, Yahoo, and nontechnological environments such as journalism, education and food service. Although this model is not viable for every business, Tate demonstrates its applicability across a variety of industries. He explains how to turbocharge your workers' creativity with unbridled camaraderie, "kamikaze deadlines" and possibly absurd expectations. getAbstract recommends Tate's primer to managers who want to inspire their workers and to workers who are already inspired and just need a little time.


Leaders Make the Future: Ten New Leadership Skills for an Uncertain World
Leaders Make the Future: Ten New Leadership Skills for an Uncertain World
by Bob Johansen
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £20.08

5.0 out of 5 stars Crystal-ball insights for leadership in an increasingly uncertain, volatile future, 19 Oct. 2012
Three years into his latest 10-year forecast, noted futurist Bob Johansen believes his core analysis still holds true for a tempestuous world influenced by four factors: "volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity," or "VUCA." Johansen expands on his first edition with updated material about his prognostications, all neatly depicted in a colorful graphic. Johansen outlines emergent opportunities and provides new insights that he gleaned from more than 150 leadership workshops based on the 10 skills he considers essential for leaders of the future. Filled with intriguing examples of the 10 skills in action, the text brings a better future to life. getAbstract believes astute leaders and students of leadership will find hope in his remedies for turning the daunting VUCA environment into a place of "vision, understanding, clarity and agility."


Confidence Men: Wall Street, Washington, and the Education of a President
Confidence Men: Wall Street, Washington, and the Education of a President
by Ron Suskind
Edition: Hardcover

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping inside look at Wall Street and Washington in the first years of the Obama administration, 19 Oct. 2012
If ever a moment was ripe for change, it was in the fall of 2008. A young president-elect had tapped into the anxieties and fears of a nation suffering through its worst economic crisis in decades. Barack Obama offered Americans hope in a better future but then hit the power-sucking nexus of Wall Street and Washington. Journalist Ron Suskind offers an insider's look at the machinations, power plays and personalities within the first year of the Obama White House and examines Obama as president against a backdrop of global drama and uncertainty. Suskind's more than 200 interviews with top participants in both finance and government - including the president - provide a telling story of how campaign promises can slam up against the intransigent realities of governing. While remaining, as always, totally neutral in terms of political points of view, getAbstract recommends Suskind's book for its particularly lucid exposition of the unfolding financial crisis and how all-too-human politicians and bankers, who - despite the cautionary admonition of former presidential chief of staff, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel - "let a crisis go to waste."


Positive Intelligence: Why Only 20% of Teams & Individuals Achieve Their True Potential & How You Can Achieve Yours
Positive Intelligence: Why Only 20% of Teams & Individuals Achieve Their True Potential & How You Can Achieve Yours
by Shirzad Chamine
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £18.50

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Creative ways to stop self-sabotage, 19 Oct. 2012
Merging theories from science, positive psychology and coaching, neuroscientist Shirzad Chamine defines your "Positive Intelligence Quotient" (PQ) as "the percentage of time your mind acts as your friend rather than as your enemy." He explains how to increase your PQ to achieve higher performance, greater happiness and less stress. Your PQ score depends on which mental forces dominate - your "Saboteurs" or your "Sage." Although many self-help books advocate the power of positive thinking, Chamine repackages the idea for practical application, even if he indulges in special jargon. getAbstract recommends his insights and guidance to those who wish to think more optimistically and to managers who need to turn around underperforming teams.


What To Do When There's Too Much To Do: Reduce Tasks, Increase Results, and Save 90 a Minutes Day
What To Do When There's Too Much To Do: Reduce Tasks, Increase Results, and Save 90 a Minutes Day
by Laura Stack
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.50

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Specific, hands-on time management advice, 15 Oct. 2012
Productivity expert Laura Stack offers simple, innovative ways to help you enjoy a more productive and meaningful workday. She shows you how to prioritize your workload and create realistic daily, weekly and yearly work schedules by decluttering your files and inbox, identifying what's really important, streamlining your workload and making more effective decisions. Some of her suggestions pertaining to health and exercise are extremely helpful, but can be found in other advice manuals. Nevertheless, most of her organizational ideas are novel and worth implementing. getAbstract recommends Stack's realistic suggestions to everyone seeking to simplify a hectic schedule.


Make Difficult People Disappear: How to Deal with Stressful Behavior and Eliminate Conflict
Make Difficult People Disappear: How to Deal with Stressful Behavior and Eliminate Conflict
by Monica Wofford
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £14.99

3.0 out of 5 stars A business fable that may change your perspective about difficult people, 15 Oct. 2012
Everyone knows someone difficult, but few people know how best to deal with irritating characters. Here's some good news: When you change how you view annoying people, most of them will miraculously lose their effect - at least on you. According to workplace training consultant Monica Wofford, individuals who appear difficult simply don't handle things the same way as the person judging them. Her advice is smart, insightful and easy to read. While she includes too much promotion of her consulting services and professional products, Wofford's treatise offers a worthwhile approach to a tough topic. getAbstract recommends her engaging business fable to readers who need relief from difficult people.


The Laptop Millionaire: How Anyone Can Escape the 9 to 5 and Make Money Online
The Laptop Millionaire: How Anyone Can Escape the 9 to 5 and Make Money Online
by Mark Anastasi
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £14.18

1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An encouraging collection of techniques for making big money on the Internet, 5 Oct. 2012
"I made $15,000 a month thanks to my e-book on ClickBank.com." "I make $30,000 a month thanks to my mailing list of 25,000 subscribers." "I make over $30,000 to $50,000 a month thanks to free traffic from the search engines." As they say, people are prospering with Internet marketing, and online sales superstar Mark Anastasi tells you how to join their ranks. He's proud that these now-wealthy entrepreneurs learned to strike it rich on the Internet by attending his seminars, viewing his DVDs or subscribing to his newsletter. He maps many different routes to potential online riches. You may want to choose carefully among his suggestions. Some are valid and helpful, but others may make you question Internet commerce. For example, one setup exploits the cheap labor of impoverished people by selling their work at many times the broker's purchase price and other tactics call for selling lists in various forms, despite possible privacy concerns. Thankfully, most of Anastasi's Internet moneymaking suggestions do not present such dilemmas, so with that alert, getAbstract suggests this intensely practical manual to anyone - especially newcomes to web enterprise - who wants to make money on the web.


The Candidate: What it Takes to Win - and Hold - the White House
The Candidate: What it Takes to Win - and Hold - the White House
by Samuel L. Popkin
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £16.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Eye-opening explanation of the gritty, grinding way the US picks its presidents, 5 Oct. 2012
Just in time for the 2012 US presidential election - and its inevitable postmortems - political scientist Samuel L. Popkin provides his take on past White House campaigners and explains why some succeeded while others failed. Popkin succinctly lays out the three major assignments that a presidential candidate must fulfill during this arduous campaign: Be one of the people, present a vision and run a well-managed campaign. A candidate who doesn't measure up on all three counts, Popkin says, will never get the keys to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue (or perhaps win any other political race, so his advice applies, in part, beyond the US or the presidential campaign). The only blot on this entertaining read is the occasional misspelling or transposition of famous names - but Popkin's observations are so engaging that you probably will forgive him. getAbstract thinks political junkies will find this a page-turner, but, thanks to Popkin's conversational and accessible style, so will anyone who cares about the democratic process anywhere. Winston Churchill allegedly said, "Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the rest." But perhaps a different piece of Churchillian wisdom applies: "Politics are almost as exciting as war, and quite as dangerous."


The Positive Dog: A Story About the Power of Positivity
The Positive Dog: A Story About the Power of Positivity
by Jon Gordon
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £11.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Touching fable about how a dog learns to be happy and how you can, too, 5 Oct. 2012
Positivity author, consultant, trainer and frequent public speaker Jon Gordon has written another touching book. Its transformative message: If you make an effort to be happy by embracing positivity, your life will vastly improve. Do you want some relevant anecdotal evidence? During the 2007 National Football League season, Jacksonville Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio gave his football players copies of Gordon's book The Energy Bus: 10 Rules to Fuel Your Life, Work and Team with Positive Energy. The result? Four wins in a row and a wildcard play-off win against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Several Jaguars players credited Gordon's writings with inspiring the team. In this journey into positivity, the protagonists are not quarterbacks, they're puppies, but the message is the same: Accentuate the positive. getAbstract recommends Gordon's upbeat pooch tale to followers of happiness literature, who will love this parable, and to anyone who wants to learn a few ways to see the bright side, even those who are a little dubious about the dogs.


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